Edralin whitewashing 303rd Brigade’s bloody record–NDF-Negros spox
National Democratic Front (NDF)-Negros lambasted 303rd Brigade Commander BGen. Orlando Edralin for whitewashing his troop’s bloody record in Negros Island.
Edralin earlier reported that from January up to May, 14 rebels, including top leaders, died in separate gun battles as shown by military records supposedly indicating that the New People’s Army (NPA) in Negros Island continues to weaken.
Ka Bayani Obrero, NDF-Negros spokesperson, remarked that the 303rd and 302nd Brigade have killed 13 farmers, five hors de combat and NDFP Consultant Rogelio Posadas from January to May this year.
Obrero further said that Lyngrace Marturillas, Denald Mialen and Renel de los Santos who were abducted with NDFP Consultant Rogelio Posadas are still in the hands of the 303rd Brigade.
“BGen. Edralin boasted of their successful neutralization of the NPA in Negros but the people only gained brutality from these words besides aggravating the people’s sufferings from poverty and lack of social services,” Obrero stated.
“It is a longstanding policy of the battalions under the 303rd Brigade, as well as those in the 302nd, to declare fake encounters when they salvage (summarily kill) those they suspect as members or supporters of the NPA,” Obrero added.
It is also their scheme to tag those they kill as NPA casualties despite the protest of the entire community, he said.
According to Obrero, this happened to several farmers such as Jose Gonzalez, Joemarie Calumba, Crispin Tingal Jr, Orlando Fat, Jose Albores and, most recently Gusting Mapos who were captured and killed in different occasions by soldiers from the 94th Infantry Battalion (94th IB), 62nd IB and 15th IB and then declared as NPA casualties in fake encounters.
In his statement, Obrero stated that the 62nd IB killed five farmers in separate incidents and declared them as NPA casualties in actual encounters last month in Moises Padilla, Negros Occidental and Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental; they were couple Juliven Ramirez and Evelyn Merez, Ruben Obidas, Antonio Babor and Jurielen Babor.
Meanwhile, Jonel Bayno and Rogelio Lacton were farmers captured by the 15th IB and were found dead in Barangay Camindangan, Sipalay City on May 25 and 27, respectively.
Ka Bayani Obrero disclosed that the revolutionary movement in Negros gave tribute to eight Red fighters martyred in legitimate encounters: Rodolfo Leo John Azucena (Ka Jemon), Andre Cose (Ka Andre), Ricky Altariba (Ka Sardo) and Ka Jeloy on March 1 at Barangay Carabalan, Himamaylan City, Negros Occidental; Ka Arnold on April 20 at Barangay La Libertad, Escalante City, Negros Occidental; and Julwar Loviano (Ka Ryan) on May 20 at Barangay Trinidad, Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental.
They also honored NDF Consultant Rogelio Posadas and five other Red fighters, however, contrary to 303rd Brigade claims, they were not killed in armed encounters; rather, they were captured and summarily executed.
Obreros said that based on the military’s policy of ‘taking no prisoners,’ Arjen Mahinay (Ka Nonong), who suffered a stroke, his medical aide Junjun Callet (Ka Ruben), and another Red fighter Henry Casido (Ka Nico) were killed in Barangay Oringao, Kabankalan City, Negros Occidental last February 4 while bedridden Anthony Curson (Ka Miguel) was executed in a hut in Barangay Budlasan, Canlaon City, Negros Oriental on April 28.
He added that Alvin Bayno (Ka Dagger) who was wounded upon capture after the encounter was finished off by 62nd IB soldiers on May 20 in Barangay Quintin Remo, Moises Padilla.
Demand justice for all victims
Ka Bayani Obrero urged the people to broaden further the united front to demand justice for all victims of killings by butchers in the AFP/PNP/NTF-Elcac, as well as, expose and oppose intensifying militarization in their communities especially in the countryside.
“State forces must answer to the merciless human rights violations they committed,” he said.
On the other hand, Obrero claimed that ruthlessness and brutality particularly in relentless military operations incite a big number of people, especially among peasants, to partake in the national democratic revolution.
“The revolutionary resolve and determination of revolutionary forces on the island to play a part in advancing the armed struggle until national liberation and democracy is achieved strengthens,” he ended.
*Hors de combat killed by military under the Marcos II regime includes Mario Baldusa (Ka Jekoy) and Janhel Sarsa (Ka Jorge). The two were wounded upon capture but the 62nd IB nevertheless killed them last November 28, 2022 after an encounter at Sitio Binataan, Quintin Remo, Moises Padilla. They were not included in Ka Bayani Obrero’s earlier statement. This brings the count of summarily killed hors de combat in Negros Island under Marcos Jr from 10 to 12.