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Military intelligence link Isabela politicos to Reds


ILAGAN, Isabela—There is brewing tension between some local executives and military intelligence operatives in the province after a report was leaked to the public regarding the alleged “unholy alliance” between some government officials and ranking officials of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA).

Mayor Delfinito Albano disclosed to reporters here that he has been singled out in the report as one among local officials, who are allegedly coddling the operations of the CPP-NPA.

Albano is the younger brother of Energy Regulatory Commission Chair Rodolfo Albano Jr.

Although the mayor did not present a copy of the report, he said he was being suspected by the military intelligence group of the Philippine Army’s 5th Infantry Division to have been paying rentals of safe houses and other logistic support of the CPP-NPA’s hit squads operating in the province.

“Tagging me a coddler and supporter of communists is a serious accusation, this could even endanger the lives of the members of my family. Being a public official, anybody can monitor my activities 24 hours a day, but they should not concoct nonfactual reports,” Albano, who declined to give names of the military men who made the report, said.

He declined also the give names of other local officials whom he said were included in the controversial intelligence report.

Albano said he and his lawyers have been thinking of filing charges against the authors of the supposedly “highly classified” military intelligence report.

It was also learned that on Wednesday, Maj. Gen. Erickson Aurelio, 5th ID commander chief, and Chief Supt. Alfredo de Vera Jr., Cagayan Valley police regional director, met in a “close-door meeting” and discussed the alleged “unholy alliance” between some local politicians and members of the communist movement.

The former 5th ID commander, Maj. Gen. Reynaldo Alcasid, had once remarked that there were some local government officials in the region who he were allegedly “sleeping with the enemy.”

Aurelio replaced Alcasid on October 15, who subsequently retired from the military service on October 20.

Albano’s exposé of the intelligence report came after rumors circulated in the province that he lent a pick-up truck, upon the request of Delai Padilla of the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan’s Isabela chapter, to transport the skeletal remains of top CPP-NPA cadre, Wilfredo Valencia, to his family in Amulung, Cagayan.

Valencia’s bones were dug up in the remote Barangay Ueg in San Mariano town recently, the military reported, who died in March last year in an encounter.

Aurelio said Valencia was the secretary-general of the CPP-NPA Cagayan Valley Regional Party Committee.

Albano, however, said that he was unaware that the vehicle would be used to transport the skeletal remains of the rebel leader.

Meanwhile other local officials in Ilagan said in anonymity that linking local officials to insurgents’ activities may “scare away potential investors” in the bustling town.

 “They should be careful in submitting so-called highly classified report because this might even adversely affect the economic stability of our municipality,” one of them said.

They said Albano has already been registered his comment to the leadership of the 5th ID-PA based in Gamu town and requested for a dialogue to clear his name and those other local government officials whom the military intelligence community alleged were coddlers of communist insurgents.

By Florante Solmerin

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Today’s Front Page February 21, 2020

Today’s Front Page February 21, 2020