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2 Assassinations by NPA Reported in Mindanao

Two assassinations, believed to be perpetrated by members of the New People’s Army (NPA), were reported in Mindanao last week.

On January 28, Joselito Rodrigo was shot and killed by several gunmen identified as members of the NPA in Barangay del Monte of Veruela, Agusan del Sur. Rodrigo is the barangay captain of Barangay Limot in Veruela. It was reported that Rodrigo was a rebel returnee. Reports indicate that the victim was stopped in a rebel roadblock and was shot several times. The victim was killed while returning home from a meeting of barangay captains of the town. Reports suggest that the motive for killing was revenge of the rebel group.

On January 30, Rudy Ayuma, a former CAFGU militiaman, was shot dead along the National Highway in Barangay Cogon, Balingasag, Misamis Oriental. SecurityMatters sources indicate that suspected members of the NPA’s hit-squad, the Special Partisan Armed Unit (SPARU), shot Ayuma. Investigators recovered five empty shells of Caliber .45 pistol at the scene

Meanwhile, an incident of kidnapping perpetrated by the NPA was reported in Compostela Valley last January 27. The next day, operating troops of the Philippine Army’s 71st Infantry Battalion rescued the victim after the residents reported the incident to the troops. The victim was Janise Mataas, 28,  a resident of Barangay Teresa in Maco, Compostela Valley. Mataas was accused by the rebels of being an informant to the military. The victim was transferred from one place to another during her captivity until she was rescued by the military in a house of a rebel sympathizer located in another sitio of the barangay.

On the same week, several incidents involving the NPA were reported in Mindanao. This included armed encounters in Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, Agusan del Norte and Davao Oriental.

The NPA, particularly its SPARU unit, is known to assassinate military personnel and civilians that they are believed to be informants of the military. The SPARU is also known to assassinate former rebel comrades who returned to normal life.

The SPARU is also known to assassinate former rebel comrades who returned to normal life as rebel-returnees.