• GILBERT P. BAYORAN
A suspected member of the New People’s Army who died in a gunbattle with Army soldiers on August 5 in Brgy. Quintin Remo, Moises Padilla, Negros Occidental, was identified by his family members, disclosed 1Lt. Mary Liza Joy De Guzman, Civil Military Operations officer of the 62nd Infantry Battalion.
The slain rebel was identified as Jonasio Enarsosa Blasco, alias Joe, a resident of the barangay.
De Guzman said that the family of Blasco was urging him to surrender. But he never listened to them, she added.
The Moises Padilla Task Force ELCAC (Ending Local Communist Armed Conflict) is now processing the burial requirements of Blasco, 56, of Sitio Tibobong, Brgy. Quintin Remo, Moises Padilla, for the turnover of his cadaver to his family.
On the same day as the encounter, a civilian identified as Joemarie Benitez, who was accused as a military informant, was summarily executed by five members of the NPA Special Partisan Unit in the barangay, according to the Moises Padilla police.
Two days after the incident, the 62IB, in tandem with Local Task Force ELCAC, held a localized peace engagement with residents of Sitio Tibobong in the barangay, where Blasco was a resident prior to his death.
De Guzman said the populace were encouraged to help injured rebels avail of medical services being offered by the Philippine Army, as well as in availing the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program of the government.
She added that the residents were also informed on the deception activities of the NPA and its legal fronts, as well as their modus operandi in recruiting the youth and farmers.*