BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
The Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office yesterday justified the apprehension of Anakbayan regional chairperson Harlyn Balora, who was arrested by the combined team of police and Army soldiers during a joint operation against elusive top Negros rebel leader Romeo Nanta on February 20 in Brgy. Camang-Camang, Isabela, Negros Occidental.
PLt. Abegael Donasco, deputy spokesperson of the Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office, yesterday said that the arrest of Balora, with aliases of Karyle and Cristel Historia, yielded a KG 9 semi-automatic pistol with a magazine containing ammunition, three pieces of 40mm ammunition for M203 grenade launcher, HEDP M433 explosives, and a fragmentation grenade.
Balora, who was tagged by the police as Anakbayan regional chairperson, was caught inside the housewhere Nanta, regional commander of the NPA in Negros Island, was staying in Brgy. Camang-Camang, Isabela,according to the Isabela police.
Brig. Gen. Inocencio Pasaporte, 303rd Infantry Brigade commander, disclosed that Balora served as a member of the regional staff under Nanta, alias Juanito Magbanua.
Youth activist Anakbayan has slammed the arrest of Balora, claiming that no arrest warrant had been served against her.
While Karapatan and Anakbayan project Balora as a member of front organization of progressive groups, the big question is “why she was with Juanito Magbanua, who is the top NPA commander in Negros?”Pasaporte asked.
Charges for violation of Comelec gun ban, illegal possession of firearms and explosives were filed on Feb. 22 by the Isabela police against Balora.
Donasco confirmed that Nanta, whose arrest warrant for homicide was issued against him by Himamaylan Regional Trial Court Judge Walter Zorilla, managed to escape during the joint police and military operations in Isabela.
If her arrest was illegal, Donasco said they should contest it court.
If Nanta is now staying in a “white area”, Donasco said that he will be arrested in due time.*