Army deplores release of top NPA commander in NegrosBy Matikas Santos
MANILA, Philippines – A top New People’s Army (NPA) commander who was previously arrested has allegedly returned to the ranks of the rebel group after being bailed out by a human rights groups, an Army spokesman said Wednesday.
Romeo Nanta, head of the NPA’s Regional Operations Command in Negros Island, was reported to have returned to his comrades after human rights group Karapatan secured his provisional liberty by posting bail, Major Enrico Ileto, 3rd Division Public Affairs Office Chief said in a statement.
Nanta was arrested by joint police and military forces last November 7, 2011 in Barangay (village) Zone 2, Cadiz City, Negros Occidental for rebellion, robbery-in-band, attempted and frustrated murder.
He was released from prison on February 21, 2012 after Fred Caña, Secretary General of Karapatan-Negros, facilitated the bail of Nanta, Ileto said.
Karapatan had also bailed out NPA members Hernando Llorente, NPA Northern Negros Front Commander, and wife Faith Roseen Basergo, an NPA political instructor, April 27 this year, Ileto added.
“Having jumped bail, we know that this will give them the opportunity to rejoin their comrades. We hope that Caña has considered this,” 3rd Infantry Division Major General Jose Mabanta Jr. said in the statement.
Ileto said that, based on military and police records, Nanta was responsible for an ambush on government officials in Barangay Salamanca in Toboso town, Negros Occidental in July 13, 2009 that claimed the lives of three people.
Nanta was also said to have conducted raids on security forces, arson against private companies, and the burning of a cell site, among others.