Gov’t troops overrun key NPA lair in Bukidnon
CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY –– Army troops have overrun a lair of the New People’s Army (NPA) in Impasug-ong, Bukidnon used as the rebels’ convergence point.
In a report obtained by the Inquirer from the Army’s 8th Infantry Battalion (8IB), the NPA camp is located in an uninhabited area in Barangay Bolonay.
When stormed by government troops on August 1, more than a hundred members of the Sentro De Grabidad Dario, Peddler, and Compaq, all guerrilla units belonging to the NPA’s North-Central Mindanao Regional Committee, converged at the hideout, the report noted.
A 20-minute battle ensued before the rebels backed away as bloodstains were seen in their escape route, said First Lt. Ken Cabbigat, 8IB civil-military operations officer.
The Army troops recovered four unexploded anti-personnel mines, 100-meter electrical wires, assorted medicines, and personal belongings.
Cabbigat identified the NPA leaders present in the meeting as alias Gab, alias Kaloy, and alias Jary or Reds.
The NPA’s Bolonay camp is about 1.2 hectares and can accommodate 150 makeshift bunkers.
Lt. Col. Ronald Illana, 8IB commander, said “concerned citizens” who are “always ready to give us any monitored enemy movement,” alerted the security forces of the NPA presence in the area.
Five years ago, NPA forces ambushed then Impasug-ong Mayor Mario Okinlay while he was en route to the town hall.
In Lanao del Sur, 21 NPA members surrendered on August 2 to the 103rd Infantry Brigade following a weeklong offensive against their positions in Lumba-Bayabao town.
The rebels have reportedly eluded the military in Bukidnon and tried to establish a foothold in Lumba-Bayabao.
“The relentless offensive of the troops pressured the enemy forces to flee and this prompted their supporters to surrender,” said Army Brigadier General Romeo Brawner, 103IB commander.
They turned over a rocket-propelled grenade, an M1 Carbine rifle, a caliber .45 pistol, two caliber .38 revolvers, and assorted ammunition, Brawner added. /lzb