Suspected rebels burn P12-M worth of heavy equipment

Police probe the burnt heavy equipment in Barangay Cabia-an, Candoni, Negros Occidental Saturday. (Photo courtesy of Candoni Municipal Police Station)

By Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD City – Police are determining if suspected members of the New People’s Army (NPA) were behind the burning of P12 million worth of heavy equipment at Purok Magboto, Barangay Cabia-an, Candoni, Negros Occidental last Saturday.

Police Captain Ronald Santillan, Candoni town police chief, said that at least 10 unidentified persons armed with long firearms arrived at the bunk house where four personnel of a construction firm were having dinner around 9:45 p.m.

The armed men then contained them in one area and told them to get on the ground.

Four of the armed men then allegedly burned a backhoe and a road roller, while two others hit another road roller and a grader, destroying its windshield and other parts of the equipment.

Santillan said the perpetrators then fled, leaving the employees unharmed.

A bridge is being constructed in the area and is almost completed.

Santillan said that the firm has not received any threats recently.

But he recalled that the firm reportedly received a threat in Barangay Gatuslao in 2014.

He said they are looking into extortion as a possible motive in the incident. Investigation is ongoing.