Thursday, September 3, 2020

CPP-NPA leader, cohorts face raps for IHL violations in Bukidnon

CAMP EVANGELISTA, Cagayan de Oro City – An NPA leader and 17 others operating in Region 10 face raps for various atrocities against innocent civilians and destruction of properties.

Through Bukidnon's Provincial State Prosecutor Rommel Alonto, the group sued the local NPA cadres for violation of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) or R.A. 9851 also known as Philippine Act on Crimes Against International Humanitarian Law, Genocide, and other Crimes Against Humanity.

The private complainants filed cases against Dionisio Micabalo alias Muling, Secretary of the NPA’s North Central Mindanao Regional Committee (NCMRC) at the Regional Trial Court (RTC) in Cagayan de Oro on Wednesday morning.

Micabalo and 17 others are charged with burning a sugarcane plantation owned by Jonathan Salas in Brgy New Eden, Pangantucan, Bukidnon for failing to give in to the NPA’s extortion demands. 


“Accused, conspired, confederated mutually by helping one another unlawfully and deliberately burned down the sugarcane plantation in Sitio Mapait, New Eden, Pangantucan, Bukidnon,” part of the complaint read.

The attack happened on December 12, 2015, around 7:15 in the morning.

Alonto said that during the armed conflict between the government and Communist Terrorist Group (CTG), civilians who are not part of the conflict and their properties are protected by the IHL and shall not be destroyed. Destruction of such constitutes a violation of IHL and R.A 9851.

Under RA 9851, the law prohibits killing or “attacks against the civilian population or individual civilians not taking direct part in hostilities.” It is also stated that it is unlawful to attack civilian properties which are undefended and which are not military objectives.

Colonel Ferdinand T Barandon, 403rd Infantry Brigade Commander, who assisted the complainants said that “we are here to facilitate in identifying the suspects with the aid of witnesses and to assist in the case build-up in coordination with the PNP to ensure that justice will be served."

Meanwhile, Major General Andres C Centino, Commander of 4th Infantry Division, said that the filing of IHL cases against Micabalo and his cohorts is a step closer to bringing the perpetrators to the bar of justice for their inhumane acts against innocent victims.

“We will not stop until justice is served against these NPA bandits," he said.

Micabalo’s co-accused were fellow NPAs; Lorna Micabalo, Juvilito Pontillas, Almer Calacar, Alias Ka Yaya, Vicente Pontillas Jr., Vicente Pontillas Sr.,Warwen del Rosario, Virgilio Canoy, Reynaldo Libres, Bernie Hentapa, Richard Libres, Dahulo Ortez, Lorena Micabalo, Rosalie Omandam, Jonald Saludar, Emie Santa Ana Y Menenter and Alias Arabu.

The suspects, if found guilty, may suffer 20 years imprisonment and a fine ranging from Php100,000 to Php500,000.

Source: Division Public Affairs Office, Joint Task Force Diamond

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