PNP to probe liability of security firm after guards were disarmed by NPA
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine National Police (PNP) will investigate the possible lapses of a security agency whose guards were disarmed by combatants from the New People’s Army (NPA) at a power plant in Balingasag town, Misamis Oriental on Monday.
PNP chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde ordered Brig. Gen. Roberto Fajardo, acting director of the PNP Civil Security Group, to initiate an investigation into the incident where security guards from AY 76 Security Agency were disarmed by communist rebels at the Minergy Power Corporation.
“The investigation seeks to look into possible administrative and operational lapses by the private security provider of this vital installation,” he said in a press briefing at Camp Crame in Quezon City on Tuesday.
Albayalde said five guards of the AY 76 Security Agency were “caught flat-footed, and did not offer any resistance” when NPA rebels stormed the facility and disarmed them of five AK-47 assault rifles and several rounds of ammunition, and looted the power plant of radio transceiver sets, and other equipment.
According to reports from the police and the military, the suspected rebels opened fire while on their way to the facility and at gunpoint, took the firearms of the security guards. No one was hurt during the incident.
The attackers were reportedly members of the Sub-Regional Command 1 of the Communist Party of the Philippines – NPA North Central Mindanao Regional Committee.
“Almost simultaneously, the terrorists launched another harassment in an isolated government post in adjacent Claveria town, apparently as a diversion to the raid in Balingasag,” said Albayalde.
Nicolas Marino, spokesperson of the NPA in Misamis Oriental, said the five-minute raid aims to “teach Minergy a lesson.”
“Minergy dumps its highly-toxic wastes in the bay and in a hole in that quarry site (in Barangay Quezon Heights),” Marino said.
He added that residents have complained to the NPA about local people suffering from asthma and sore eyes since the power plant fully operated in September 2017. /jpv
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