BUGUIAS, Benguet – Hundreds of residents and local officials strongly condemned the May 16, 2017, attack made by armed members of the New Peoples Army (NPA) Jennifer Carino command in the Loo barangay tanod outpost negating allegations of corrupt and extortion activities of any police officer assigned in the said barangay.
In Loo Barangay Resolution No. 2017-14 which was signed by Punong Barangay Dionisio C. Badian and Barangay Kagawads Manuel G. Yans, Salvador W. Sab-it, Teofilo P. Olsino, Alexander Patawang, Magno A. Dangpa, Brino C. Bongaoil and Amado M. Poclis, the council stated in fact, the presence of policemen in their place helps in the maintenance of peace and order in the community.
The resolution stated the cruel and deplorable acts of lawless elements that compromise the peace and order situation of the barangay should never be tolerated and must be condemned in the highest possible terms
The Liga ng mga Barangay of Buguias and the municipal council also passed similar resolutions condemning the presence of any armed group and other lawless elements in the municipality in relation to the robbery, intimidation, and harassment committed against a police officer and two civilian barangay peacekeeping action team members.
It will be recalled that on May 16, 2017 at around 9 pm, the outpost at Proper Loo was allegedly attacked by heavily armed members of the NPA Jennifer Carino command.
The communist rebels reportedly carted away the service firearm, ammunitions, personal belongings of a police officer assigned in the area and the two assisting barangay tanods.
Right after the attack, the NPA Jennifer Carino command openly admitted having been the perpetrators of the atrocities professing themselves as protectors of human rights and of the oppressed.
In their press statement, the rebels justified that the incident is a punitive action for the crimes committed by the members of the Buguias Philippine National Police (PNP).
In a separate manifesto submitted by the Abatan Buguias Open Gym Vendors Association, the Indigenous Mountaineers Advocating Peace and Unity, and Abatan Liquor Store Organization, the signatories also deplored such cowardly act of the rebels in robbing the police officer and branded the same as an isolated incident and to them, it is a pure robbery incident.
The civil society groups cited the claim of the NPA Jennifer Carino command as regards the corrupt activities of members of the Buguias PNP, assuming there are semblances of truth to such claim, can be addressed within their level and should not sacrifice police officers performing tirelessly to maintain law and order in the municipality.
For his part, Mayor Ruben Tinda-an asserted the local government recognizes the role of the police force in maintaining peace, security, and order among the residents and thus, the isolated incident in the locality should not be used against policemen who are dedicated to the performance of their assigned duties and responsibilities.