Suspected insurgent arrested in Balbalan

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TABUK CITY, Kalinga- With the arrest of one of the members of the Militia ng Bayan (MB), the Philippine National Police (PNP) in Kalinga said that it has dealt a significant blow to the insurgency problem plaguing the province.

Arrested is a suspected MB member identified as Pancho “Edgar” Lunes on June 8, 2020 at Sitio Ubel, Barangay Gawaan, Balbalan by vitue of a warrant of arrest for double murder and multiple frustrated murder.

According to the Kalinga Provincial Police Office (KPPO), the arrest was made through the joint efforts of the Provincial Intelligence Unit/Drug Enforcement Unit (PIU/DEU)-KPPO led by PLTCOL Romulo Talay, Jr., Balbalan MPS led by PCPT George Apostol Acob, COP, Regional Intelligence Division (RID) PRO-COR, Regional Intelligence Unit (RIU)-14, Second Kalinga Provincial Mobile Force Company (2nd KPMFC), Tabuk CPS, Regional Mobile Force Batallion (RMFB) 1503rd, 503rd Brigade, 5th Infantry Division, 50th Infantry Batallion – PA, and MIG2, supervised by Provincial Director PCOL Davy Limmong,

Additionally, Lunes had initially been tagged and listed by the PRO-COR as a wanted terrorist with a bounty of P700,000.00 under DND-DILG joint order 14-2012.

Further, the warrant was issued by then Judge Marcelino Wacas, RTC Branch 25, with no bail set.

Lunes is now under the custody of the PNP and is waiting for proper charges to be filed.

According to PD Limmong, Lunes’ arrest as well as the arrest and surrender of other members of the CPP-NPA-NDF in the province is a sign of their forces weakening and that it will definitely affect their operations greatly.

He also encouraged the family members of active insurgents to return to the folds of the law thru the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC).

Brigadier General Henry Doyaoen, also said that the need not be afraid to inform authorities if they know if there are presence of any terrorist in their area.

If there are those who wish to return to the folds of the government, they should not hesitate to do so because they are still citizens of the country and that they were just deceived by a wrong ideology.

He then said that there is also a program of the government (NTF-ELCAC) created to help them with their livelihood if they choose to come back.

By Edward Joseph Gacuya

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