SURIGAO DEL NORTE – The communist rebel group New People’s Army (NPA) was linked to the recent destruction of a prawn farm in Malimono town, this province.
Colonel Noel Espinosa, in a statement sent to media outlets said P8.5 million worth of cultured prawns were destroyed by the communist rebels allegedly after a failed extortion.
The military has accused the rebels as behind the destruction of the cultured prawn facility on Saturday (June 19) in Barangay Pili, Malimono municipality.
Espinosa has pointed the Sandatahang Yunit Pampropaganda 168 of Guerilla Front of the NPA’s North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee.
“The NPA rebels who destroyed the prawn farm were led by Gela Ybañez or alias Zanjo or Weng,” the military official said. “Refusal to give in to the CTGs’ (communist terrorist groups) extortion demand is the possible motive of this attack.”
Initial investigation disclosed that undetermined number of NPA combatants commanded one of the workers at the prawn farm and allegedly ordered opening of the pond gates. After seeing the destruction they immediately fled from the crime scene.
Brig General Romeo Caramat Jr, told the media military forces are now pursuing the communist rebels.
He said the destruction of a prawn farm were among the desperate moves of the rebel group following massive surrenders of their comrades all over the country.
The military official reminded businessmen in the region not to give any taxes to the rebel group as this is a form of extortion.
Caramat said “Giving any amount of money or providing any kind of support will further escalate the terroristic activities of the NPA insurgents, including the killings of innocent civilians and the destruction of properties,” he stated. – PNA