December 26 NPA Anniversary in Caraga a flop, says military 

by Ben Serrano

December 27, 2010

            BUTUAN CITY (PNA) - Low turnout of attendees of the recently concluded December 26, 2010 NPA anniversary held at the farming village of Sitio Pog-on, Barangay Sto..Niňo, San Agustin, Surigao del Sur only revealed the already declining people support to the communist insurgents, the military press statement said furnish to this writer claimed. 

            Major Eugenio Julio Osias IV, Commanding Officer of 4th Civil Military Operations (Masaligan) who is based at 4th ID Army Division in Cagayan de Oro City and signatory of the press statement said the New People’s Army has not come up with the desired number of attendees during the event.

 “Of their expected 10,000, only less than 3,000 attendees were able to make it. The low turn-out of their expected personalities dampened the festive atmosphere of their celebration. It goes to show that they are now weaker and less influential than what they used to be several years ago”, Osias said.

Osias added most of the invited politicians did not attend the event, except for a vice mayor and some barangay captains in the area.

Osias further claimed that he is just wondering as to what the rebels are trying to celebrate which was a far outcry from the reality.

“Maybe what they are celebrating is their successful extortion activities, killings, murders, human rights violations which are all making the lives of the people in Caraga Region and Northern Mindanao harder” Osias claimed. 

Despite of the waning NPA popularity as the military claimed,  Osias had piece of unsolicited advice to the NPA rebels “We are sincerely inviting the CPP/NPA/NDF here in CARAGA Region to join the 4th ID in our peace and development projects. These projects will surely benefit all our stakeholders.”

The press statement further claimed that the NPA anniversary would have been meaningful if only they will be able to prove that they had helped the communities and successfully made and improved the economic lives of the people. If they are really for the people's welfare then they should work hand in hand with the government's efforts for national unity

Said press statement criticized NPA leader Jorge Madlos aka Ka Oris pronouncements that he will punish all mining companies for destroying Caraga region’s environment and natural resources saying he and the rest of NPA rebels allegedly benefitted from mining companies now operating in the region. 

“The communist rebels are imposing higher revolutionary taxes to mining investors because they needed money to finance their armed struggle and this scheme is driving away business groups here in Mindanao,” Osias said.

Major General Victor A. Felix, Commander of the 4th Infantry “Diamond” Division said that they still believed in the primacy of the peace talks. He also encourages the CPP/NPA/NDF to stay in the negotiating table for the good of the people and the entire nation. “All the rebels are welcome to join the mainstream of the society, and we are very much committed to help them. (PNA/Ben Serrano)