BUTUAN CITY – Soldiers of the 23rd Infantry Battalion (23rd IB) retrieved the body of a New People’s Army (NPA) rebel, who was believed to have been abandoned by his comrades, in the hinterland area of Tungao, Butuan City, military reported late Tuesday afternoon.
Fourth Infantry Division (4th ID) Public Affairs Office (PAO) Chief Maj. Rodolfo S. Cordero, Jr. told The Manila Bulletin on Tuesday that the remains of the NPA rebel was formally handed over to the barangay council of Tungao, also of Butuan City on Sunday evening, January 10.
The discovery of the cadaver was made possible through the report of a concerned citizen, stating that they found a dead body in Kilometer 6, Purok 26, Lawaan, Barangay Tungao, Butuan City, the 4th ID PAO chief said.
The command and action center of 23rd IB immediately responded to the report of the concerned citizen, together with the Butuan City Mobile Force Company (BCMFC) personnel of Station 5, Tungao, Butuan City.
The cadaver was confirmed as a member and a remnant of the Guerrilla Front (GF) 4A of the CPP-NPA North Central Mindanao Regional Committee (NCMRC), led by a certain “Ka Kitkit”, the former Squad Leader of SDG CAOACAO.
“The dead NPA was among the NPA remnants who clashed with the 23rd IB troopers in the area last December 30, 2020. The cadaver was identified as certain “Ka Bebot” (true name withheld),” 23rd IB Civil Military Operations (CMO) Officer First Lt. Roel T. Maglalang also said.
During the retrieval of the cadaver, the 23rd IB troopers also recovered a 3516 improvised pistol with five bullets, two cellular phones, a charger, and a bag, the 23rd IB CMO officer said.
Based on the information provided by the concerned citizens, the NPA member was seriously wounded in a December 30 encounter, and was abandoned by his comrades. With the absence of mass support, he was left unattended and eventually died due to his wounds, Maglalang added.
Meanwhile, 23rd IB commanding officer Lt. Col. Julius Cesar C. Paulo said that the fate of the NPA member whose cadaver was recently discovered, manifested the complete disregard of the NPA on the value of life.
“The NPA terrorists don’t care and value life. That is why we encourage everyone to be vigilant from the deceit of the CPP-NPA,” the 23rd IB commander said.