BACOLOD CITY: The New People’s Army (NPA) admitted on Monday that they were behind the July 21 bloody ambush in Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental that killed the chief of police, five policemen and a civilian.
In a statement sent to local media here, JB Regalado, spokesman of the communists’ Leonardo Panaligan Command, claimed that the tactical offensive against the Guihulngan City Police Station in Barangay Magsaysay was “a success.”
The NPA said they were acting on complaints of the residents against the policemen whom the rebels accused of killings, abuses and engaging in illegal drugs.
The statement also said they did not commit human rights violations when they perpetrated the ambush because “they are legitimate military targets.”
The rebels said the police immediately responded after Councilor Edison de la Rita’s call for help, “but they didn’t help the victims who reported the crimes of the councilor.”
Regalado said the firefight with the policemen lasted for 30 minutes.
The rebels also took away six M16 assault rifles, three M4 assault rifles, seven 9mm caliber pistols, a .45 caliber pistol, nine bandoliers, magazines and more than 1,000 rounds of live ammunition and four cellphones.
However, they denied taking the policemen’s money and watches.
The rebels also accused the Guihulngan policemen of illegal activities.
They accused them of murdering seven people since 2008 and receiving money from individuals for the hit.
The policemen allegedly committed illegal arrests and torture and are protecting drug lords and pushers, who supply drugs in Guihulngan from Cebu City, Regalado said.
Killed during the ambush were police Chief Supt. Arnel Arpon, Senior Police Officer (SPO) 2 Mecasio Tabilon, SPO2 Teovic Agosto, SPO1 Jesael Ancheta, Police Officer (PO) 2 Alvin Paul Bulandres, PO2 Alfredo Dunque, and Michael Jambalos, driver of Dela Rita. Also injured were SPO4 Jerome Delara, PO3 Jordan Balderas and PO2 Jorie Maribao.
Meanwhile, Negros Occidental Gov. Alfredo Maranon Jr., was not surprised with the rebels’ admission of the ambush.
“It was very clear to the people that they did it,” Maranon said.