The mother of 23-year-old New People’s Army (NPA) leader Virgilio “Kumander Bedam” Tamban, who was killed in a clash with government troops in Isabela, Negros Occidental on March 9, is mourning the death of her son, whom she dreamed would finish school and lead a better life.
“His father and I had always hoped he will come home,” the grieving parent said in Cebuano in a video released Tuesday by the Philippine Army’s 62nd Infantry Battalion (IB).
Tamban was the commanding officer of Sandatahang Yunit Pampropaganda Platoon Lenovo of the NPA’s Leonardo Panaligan Command, and was tagged by the military as a “notorious hitman” responsible for a string of murder cases in central Negros in February and March this year.
His mother traveled from their residence in Sitio Casingan, Barangay Trinidad in Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental to claim his body from a funeral parlor in Isabela town on March 10.
His remains were brought home for interment in a public cemetery on March 14.
“It’s been a long time since we have seen him, but now that we finally saw him, he is in that situation,” Tamban’s mother said while in tears.
She said his elder sibling had also asked him to go home to his parents.
“We wanted to enroll him so he can go back to school, but it will not happen anymore,” she added.
According to the 62IB, Tamban was only 20 when he was recruited to join the NPA, and his mother said her son just kept on hiding from government forces all those times he was with the rebel movement.
She appealed to the comrades of her son to return to the fold of the law and avail of government assistance for former rebels.
“It is really sad for us parents. It is painful to see this happen (to your own child),” she said.
During a clash with 62nd IB troops in Barangay Amin, Tamban was killed with Ben Jack “Ka Yuhan” Rueles, a member of the NPA’s Regional Striking Force of Komiteng Rehiyon Negros, Cebu, Bohol, and Siquijor.
The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), with its armed wing, the NPA, is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.
The National Democratic Front (NDF) has also been formally designated as a terrorist organization by the Anti-Terrorism Council on June 23, 2021, citing it as “an integral and inseparable part” of the CPP-NPA created in April 1973.*PNA