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‘Panay’s top communist leader’ freed on bail, set to join peace talks

/ 08:01 PM August 17, 2016
 Iloilo Provincial Jail (INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/ EDGAR ALLAN M. SEMBRANO)


Iloilo Provincial Jail (INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/ EDGAR ALLAN M. SEMBRANO)

ILOILO CITY — The alleged top communist rebel leader on Panay Island was freed from jail Wednesday afternoon after courts granted her petition for bail.

Ma. Concepcion “Concha” Araneta-Bocala left the Special Intensive Care Area of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology District Jail in Barangay Nanga in Pototan town in Iloilo abut 1:30 p.m.

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She immediately proceeded to the University of the Philippines Visayas campus in Iloilo City for a press conference and forum on the peace negotiations between the Philippine government and the National Democratic Front.

Bocala, allegedly the secretary of the Panay Regional Committee of the Communist Party of the Philippines when she was arrested in 2015, is among the “rebel leaders” freed to join the formal resumption of the peace negotiations set in Oslo, Norway from Aug. 20 to 27.

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Courts in Iloilo City, Aklan and Antique ordered her release after she posted bail totalling P400,000.

Various courts earlier also granted the temporary release of other alleged ranking leaders of the Communist Party of the Philippines including couple Benito Tiamzon and Wilma Tiamzon.

Bocala is facing a murder charge before the Kalibo, Aklan Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 2. She is among the accused in the killing of Metudio Inesa on Sept. 18, 1975 at Sitio Agbanuod in Barangay Panipiason in Madalag town, Aklan.

She has also been charged with rebellion before the Culasi, Antique RTC Branch 13.

A third case is for charges of illegal possession of firearms and ammunition and illegal possession of explosives before the Iloilo RTC Branch 23.

Bocala, 65, has denied the allegations, saying these are “trumped-up” charges to justify her prolonged detention.

Bocala was arrested in a rented house in Molo District in Iloilo City on Aug. 1, 2016, with a P7.8-million bounty for her arrest.

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A scion of the landed Araneta family, Bocala went underground and joined the New People’s Army when the late strong Ferdinand Marcos declared Martial Law on Sept. 21, 1972.  SFM

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TAGS: Aklan, antique, Araneta family, Armed conflict, bail, bail bond, Barnagay Nanga, Bureau of Jail Management and Penology District Jail, Communist Party of the Philippines, communist rebellion, courts, CPP, Crime, crime victim, Culasi, Ferdinand Marcos, freed on bail, freedom on bail, illegal possession of explosives, illegal possession of firearms and explosives, Iloilo, Iloilo Regional Trial Court Branch 23, Insurgency, Justice, Kalibo, law, litigation, Ma. Concep[cion "Concha" Araneta-Bocala, Martial law, Metudio Inesa, Murder, Nation, National Democratic Front of the Philippines, NDFP, New People's Army, news, Norway, NPA, Oslo, Panay Regional Committee of the CPP, peace, peace negotiations, peace process, Peace Talks, Philippine Government, Pototan municipality, rebellion, Regional Trial Court Branch 13 in Culasi Antique, Regional Trial Court Branch 2 in Kalibo Aklan, Regions, release of detainee, Special Intensive Care Area, temporary freedom on bail, trials
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