BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya: The police station chief of Maddela town in Quirino province was relieved from his post after some 70 members of the New People’s Army (NPA) raided the station on Saturday night leaving one policeman dead.
Chief Insp. Jhun Jhun Balisi said he respects the relief order of Region 2 Director, Chief Supt. Eliseo Rasco, even as he admitted he was not at the police station when it was attacked because he was on his way to Quirino police office.
At about 10:30 p.m. on Saturday at least 70 members of the NPA Southern Front under Romeo Cudal, on board five vehicles, staged the lightning raid on the station.
The police personnel at the station resisted the gunmen but were overpowered resulting in the death of Police Officer 2 Jerome Luwi Cardenas who was on duty as sentinel.
The NPA rebels then ransacked the station and carted away six M-16 rifles, four 9 mm service pistols, cellular phones and other valuables.
They also took the station’s patrol vehicles, a Mahindra car and a Hi-Lux police mobile, which they used in their escape.
They also abducted the station’s senior officer, Senior Police Officer 4 Antonio Siriban, whom they used as human shield in their escape. Siriban was later found dazed but alive by pursuing enforcers.
The Mahindra car was recovered at a riverbank in Barangay San Pedro while the Patrol car was found abandoned in Barangay Cabua-an, both in Maddela.
An investigation is being conducted to determine if there was failure on the part of the policemen in raid.
“I condemn in the strongest term possible the barbaric acts of the New People’s Army against the territorial police force in Maddela, who were only peaceably doing their duties at the police station. Their actions are misguided, and anti-people and have time and again showed their insincerity in pursuing peace with the Government of the Republic of the Philippines.” Rasco said in a statement.
LEANDER C. DOMINGO