Worker killed, another wounded as NPA rebels attack N. Cotabato rubber farm


KIDAPAWAN CITY, Philippines– Communist rebels on Sunday night killed a worker of a rubber plantation and wounded another after setting on fire the firm’s multi-million processing plant in Makilala, North Cotabato.

Lt. Nasrullah Sema, speaking for the 57th Infantry Battalion, identified the fatality as Hector Lalaguna, and his wounded co-worker, Francisco Andap.

The workers were on board a light cargo truck rushing to the processing plant facility in Barangay  (village) Talun-Talunan of Standard Rubber Development Corporation when the vehicle stepped on a land mine planted by New People’s Army (NPA).

“The landmine was intended for government forces who were expected to respond to the fire incident,” Sema said, adding that the NPA fired assault rifles while the fire was raging.

Witnesses said they saw the rebels, numbering about 30, chanting “Long Live CPP-NPA” as the fire was erupting on the multi-million plant located about a kilometer away from the Cotabato-Davao highway.

Another witness said the rebels arrived on board a hauler truck at about 8 p.m. and surrounded the processing facility. They then started pouring gasoline and set the place on fire.

Other rebels surveyed the lone road leading to the processing plant and planted several landmines, Sema said.

Sema believed the attack was due to the firm’s refusal to pay revolutionary taxes being collected by NPA Front 72 in North Cotabato.

Other multi-national firms producing banana and other high value crops in North Cotabato had been allegedly subjected to harassment by the NPA for the managements’ continuous rejection of forced taxation by the rebels.

Makilala Mayor Rudy Caoagdan condemned Sunday’s attack and called on the military to take appropriate action.

The burning of the rubber processing plant came as the national government celebrates the National Peace Consciousness Month with the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process calling for the resumption of the peace talks with the communist rebels.

Get Inquirer updates while on the go, add us on these apps:

Inquirer Viber

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.

Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:

c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


editors' picks



latest videos