Slay of ex-rebel by ‘NPA’ hitmen in Surigao Sur condemned

BUTUAN CITY – Top officials of the Police Regional Office in Caraga Region (PRO-13) condemned the communist New People’s Army (NPA) for the alleged killing of a former rebel in Surigao del Sur.

PRO-13 Public Information Officer Maj. Renel E. Serrano, in a statement Sunday, said Jojo S. Sabelino, 30, was gunned down by two suspected NPA members in his residence in Barangay Buenavista, Tandag City on Friday (July 3).

Serrano said the victim succumbed to gunshot wounds in different parts of his body.

Police personnel in Tandag City, he said, are now working to arrest the perpetrators who immediately fled after the incident.

PRO-13 director, Brig. Gen. Joselito T. Esquivel Jr., condemned the NPA for killing their former comrade.

“We mourn the loss of a former rebel who returned to the fold of the law and chose to live a peaceful life,” Esquivel said.

He also described the incident as a “demonic act” that manifested clear evidence of the NPA’s disrespect to the peoples’ right to life.

“What they have done is contrary to their claim as pro-people and pro-life,” Esquivel said.

He added that several people witnessed the killing based on the investigation conducted by the police personnel in Tandag City.

The witnesses, Esquivel added, identified a male and female suspects who they earlier noticed roaming around the vicinity of the residence of the victim before the shooting took place.

He said the witnesses particularly identified the female suspect as an NPA member.

Esquivel assured the family of the victims of justice as the police work for the arrest of his killers.

In a separate interview Sunday, Col. James T. Goforth, director of Surigao del Sur Police Provincial Office (SDSPPO), also condemned the killing of Sabelino.

“The person is already living peacefully with his family and in their community but the communist NPA rebels mercilessly killed the victim,” Goforth said.

Goforth said the SDSPPO will work with the police personnel in Tandag City to go after the perpetrators to render justice to the family of the victim.

He also asked for the cooperation of the residents in the area to support the efforts of the police to bring to justice the perpetrators of the crime.

The CPP-NPA is listed as terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines

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