Isolated IP village in DavNor harassed anew
DAVAO DEL NORTE, May 14 (PIA) — Indigenous peoples (IP) of extremely isolated village of Tapayanon in the Municipality of Kapalong were again in traumatic situation when the communist terrorist group New People’s Army (NPA) harassed them recently.
In a phone-patch report during the Pakigsayod: Serbisyo Alang sa Katawhang Pilipino, Civil Military Operations Officer 1Lt. Amadeus Vincent John Celestial of the 60th Infantry “Mediator”Battalion revealed that the rebel group again harassed on Monday the village nestled at the tri-boundary of the provinces of Davao del Norte, Bukidnon and Agusan del Sur.
Celestial reported it was the second incident that the rebels put the IP village of Tapayanon in a traumatic situation “as about 20 or 30 of them settled at a higher ground and released gunshots at a time when members of the community were tending their farms”.
It was the landing zone of helicopters that Celestial was referring to where the communist terrorist group was positioning in staging the harassment believed as the group’s strategy to divert attention of government troops which had cornered their rebel colleagues.
“They usually does this harassment to distract the government forces; to divert the attention of government force and give time for their cornered forces to escape,” Celestial said referring to intensified operations of the Philippine Army 4th Infantry Division also operating at the boundary at the Pantaron Range.
The village of Tapayanon lies at the foot of Pantaron Range, in a location which as of these days can only be reached through helicopter. Per operation of 60th IB, the village is accessible on foot in about a week walk through mountains, valleys and creeks.
No one was hurt during the recent harassment incident. The 60th IB troopers had already made sure to strengthen defenses after the first act of apparent attack the rebels did in March this year.
“Madaling nakapag respond ang ating mga tropa at na briefing na rin ang mga tao what to do; mas prepared na tayo this time,” Celestial said.
Meanwhile, Kapalong Municipal Mayor Ma. Theresa Timbol already had aired her condemnation of the attacks that the communist terrorist group had done on the village of Tapayanon which the Municipal Government of Kapalong made part of its area under Barangay Gupitan.
Citing the harassment that the communist terrorist group did, Timbol regarded this as “total disregard of human lives” that “wreck havoc on the safety of the whole Tapayanon community”.
On the same tone, the Office of Municipal Tribal Affairs of Kapalong also had released Resolution No. 01-2020 “strongly condemning” the attack of CPP-NPA against the 60th IB and the harassment against “innocent settlers”of Sitio Tapayanon.
The Resolution was the offshoot of the dialogues that Municipal IPMR Arturo Davao initiated with tribal leaders of Sitio Tapayaon.
Meanwhile, 60th Inf Battalion commander, Lt. Col. Ronaldo Sarmiento in a statement viewed the harassment on Tapayon as a manifestation of “hurting” disposition of the communist terrorist group which had already been ripped of “potential communist-terrorist recruits who they hope would continue to advance their evil intentions and ideologies”.
Sarmiento cited the sustained development interventions of the national and local governments such as food production and farming, health/medical and hygiene and sanitation activities, enrolment to social welfare programs and emergency employment schemes, establishment of a DepEd Extension (Annex) School, and the opening of access/farm-to-market roads. (PIA XI Jeanevive Duron Abangan)