The New People’s Army (NPA)-Negros (Mt. Cansermon Command) successfully paralyzed the destructive open-pit mining operations of the Pilipinas Eco-friendly Mining Corporation (PEMC) in Ayungon, Negros Oriental last January, at past 1 a.m. The NPA disabled the equipment of the PEMC used in open-it mining between barangays of Banban and Mabato in the said town.
The NPA destroyed seven backhoes, two payloaders, a grader, bulldozer and two generator sets. The cost of all these is estimated at P120 million.
People in the area have long complained about the open-pit mining operation because of the adverse effect on their livelihood. These poison the streams and rivers where fisherfolk draw their livelihood and which help irrigate the fields of farmers. These are also detrimental to the adjacent 2,000 hectares and have caused the dislocation of five barrios in Ayungon.
The PEMC is 15th among the biggest profit-making mining companies in the country. It also supplies silica (mineral used in cement production) to the 10 biggest cement factories in the country.
The PEMC area is part of the 4,717 hectares which at least five companies target to mine in the mountainous part of Ayungon.
The NPA carried out the operation in line with the policy of the people’s democratic government to sanction companies which destroy and abuse the environment and the people’s livelihood.
Meanwhile, a unit of the NPA-Central Negros (Leonardo Panaligan Command or LPC) meted out punishment against Joseph Gavia, a CAFGU element in Barangay Linantuyan, Guihulngan last January 6. Gavia served as intelligence agent of the AFP and has long terrorized the said community. When intoxicated, he swings and fires his gun on people.
The LPC also carried out two sniping operations last January 4 in response to the successive killings, illegal arrests and filing of tramped-up charges against civilians after the Synchronized Enchanced Managing of Police Operations (SEMPO) in the wee hours of December 27, 2018.
At 2:04 p.m., an NPA unit fired at the detachment of the AFP in Barangay Linantuyan, Guihulngan, Negros Oriental. Another NPA unit simultaneously fired at another detachment in Barangay Sikatuna, Isabela, Negros Occidental. The military suffered two casualties, according to initial reports.
In a related news, the NPA belied reports of a supposed January 3 encounter between them and the AFP in Barangay Budlasan, Canlaon City and Barangay Calupaan, Guihulngan City.