Last October 29, 2017 an encounter between the 54th Infantry Battalion and a unit of the New People’s Army- Leonardo Pacsi Command (NPA-LPC) took place near Brgy. Dalican in Bontoc Mountain Province.
The initial press release of the 54 th IB was that they received intelligence that the NPA was out to sabotage an ongoing concert in Sagada so they needed to secure the area. This is but another deceit by the Philippine Army.
First and foremost, the said location of the encounter was too far from the venue of the concert to be considered a threat of sabotage. In truth, the Philippine Army and Philippine National Police took advantage of the concert to justify a military operation in the area.
It will be recalled that on the night of October 10 another unit of the LPC dismantled and burned the sub-station of Hedcor- Sabangan in Otucan Norte Bauko as punitive action against Hedcor Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Aboitiz Power Corporation. The 54 th IB which serves as private security for Hedcor, has been inutile in preventing the said tactical offensive and has been proven futile once more in their attempt for a pursuit operation.
The claims of the 503 rd Infantry Brigade that the operating troops discovered an encampment and that the NPA sustained casualties is but a poor attempt to save what is left of the pride of their soldiers, and a failure to show-off to their capitalist master which is Hedcor. This is proof that the mercenary tradition of the Philippine Army will never upset the pro-poor and pro-people principle of the NPA.
All aggressions to take over indigenous people’s common resources, robbing the people of their land and water ights, manipulation and deception to push through with capitalist interests, militarization and all threats against peace will not be condoned by the Communist Party of the Philippines- New People’s Army and the Cordillera People’s Democratic Front.