Negros Oriental exec killed in ambush
CEBU CITY – Eight months after he survived an ambush, Councilor Edison dela Rita of Guihulngan City in Negros Oriental was again attacked by still unidentified gunmen on Monday.
Only this time, he was not able to escape death.
Dela Rita died after his assailants repeatedly shot him while he was aboard his motorcycle around 7 a.m. in Brgy. Poblacion.
In a news conference here also on Monday, Chief Supt. Robert Quenery, director of the Police Regional Office in Central Visayas (PRO-7), told reporters that he had ordered a hot pursuit operation against the perpetrators.
He also suspected that the New People’s Army might have a hand on this attack against Dela Rita, citing that the communist rebels had attempted to kill Dela Rita in 2017.
On July 21, 2017, the NPA staged an ambush on Dela Rita, who was at the time aboard his motorcycle on his way to his farm. He survived that attack but it left six policemen and his bodyguard dead.
Among those killed in that ambush were Supt. Arnel Apron, Guihulngan police chief, and his five men who went to Brgy. Magsaysay, Guihulngan to rescue the councilor who asked for help.
JB Regalado, spokesperson for the NPA’s Leonardo Panaligan Command, released a statement two weeks after and owned up to the ambush, saying it stemmed from the people’s demand for justice on supposed abuses committed by the police and Dela Rita.
The Guihulngan ambush prompted President Rodrigo Duterte to scrap the peace talks with the communist rebels, whom he eventually tagged as terrorists. /kga
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