Friday, August 10, 2012

NPA seizes four firearms in Bit-os, Butuan

From the Website of PRWC - CPP/NPA/NDF

NPA seizes four firearms in Bit-os, Butuan

Omar Ibarra
Cesar Cayon Command - NPA-Northcentral Mindanao
August 7, 2012

An oversized platoon of the Cesar Cayon Command of the New People's Army ambushed two policemen riding a motorcycle in Brgy. Bit-os, Butuan City around 9:00 in the morning of August 6. PO2 Adonis Dumaboc was killed in action while PO2 Sergio Saragospe was wounded. The Red fighters seized two M16 rifles, two 9 mm pistols, ammo vests and some ammunition.

Even before their turn to guard the supposedly impounded logs in Amparo, these policemen were already regularly plying the Bit-os—Amparo route to extort from passing log transports. Persistent complaints of people engaged in the wood-based trade, made these policemen legitimate target of the NPA. On August 5, the NPA fighters were already lying in ambush for them. Their patrol car, with six policemen and two CAFGUs onboard, passed by the ambush position at the same day but the NPA postponed the intended military action because among those onboard were three civilians. The ambush succeeded because of the overwhelming support of the people who have long called for the end of these policemen's blatant daylight robbery.

Manual and carabao-loggers as well as small businessmen have long complained of the brazen extortion activities of the said policemen who were assigned at the pumping station of the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) in Bit-os. Only by sheer luck can those who pass by the Agusan River and the road linking Butuan City, Tungao and Las Nieves avoid extortion while passing through their checkpoints. For a long time, these thriving members of the crocodile species in Agusan River and on dry land were left unchecked, and they seem to be more ravenous than the real crocodile Lolong in bleeding dry the poor owners of falcatta, bay-ang, gemelina, mahogany and other planted tree species, whether they travel by the river or by the road. They have been accustomed with hefty bribes fed by log smugglers to ensure that the latter can carry on with their unhampered illegal business. Now that lumber is becoming scarce due to the denudation of our forests, the tight monitoring of reactionary government agencies on smugglers, and on top of all that, Pnoy's farcical declaration of a log ban, the small, poor loggers wittingly became convenient punching bags. Even legal businessmen have only to endure the rottenness of this system which has existed here for decades.

"SOP," "good morning," and "pangkape," has been the tradition of at least 40 crocodile checkpoints along the banks of Agusan River from Sabang Gibong, in La Paz, Agusan del Sur downstream to Butuan. In the entire towing course, loggers cannot in any way get away with each of the checkpoints of Army-CAA, PNP, LGU, NCIP, NBI, GSAC, "Bantay Kalikasan," Anti-Smuggling Task Force, PNP Maritime and DENR without feeding first the wide-mouthed crocodile. It is unfortunate for those who pass by without ready stuffed envelopes. They will have to face up to  warning shots if not  directly strafed and forced to dive the depths of Agusan for safety,  to be discovered with flawed papers, to be slapped with fabricated irregulaties, to be delayed at the checkpoint, and even for their transactions to fail altogether.

But every anti-people deed will sooner or later come to its end. The cry for justice of their victims will eventually be fulfilled. May this serve as a warning to many other extortionists to end their corrupt practices of victimizing the people. On the other hand, the victims should also assert their rights and use all workable means to oppose the extortion activities of these uniformed and armed personnel who earn their salaries from the people's taxes. They should embark on unified actions in making petitions, airing their complaints, and even filing lawsuits to the reactionary court. If the people will not act, these robbers will have nothing to fear. As our revolutionary commitment, The New People's Army is ever ready to support the people's united action and to defend the oppressed and exploited at all times.

At this juncture, before Mayor Amante even starts to castigate us, he should check if the 4,000 cubic meters of confiscated logs that Noynoy showcased in his SONA is still complete. Is he completely sure the crocodiles have not devoured the income from a part of the three-kilometer line? 

Omar Ibarra (sgd)
Spokesperson, CCC