NPA accuses Davao governor of maintaining private army

Subscribe Now April 23, 2014 at 08:36am

The communist New People’s Army (NPA) said Davao del Sur Governor Claude Bautista has been keeping a company-strong private armed group in Malita, making him the "most powerful warlord" in the provinces of Davao del Sur and Davao Occidental.

In an emailed statement, Ka Efren Aksasato, spokesperson of the NDF (National Democratic Front) Far South Mindanao region, also said the NPA has vowed to carry out more attacks to weaken Bautista’s rule in the provinces.

Bautista denied the allegations, saying residents could attest to the fact that he has been guarded by policemen, not by private armed guards.

The NPA also said in a statement that they were not surprised that Bautista came to the defense of Jose Abad Santos Mayor James “Jimmy” Joyce, whose house in the village of Culaman in Jose Abad Santos town the NPAs raided on April 13.

“The group punished by the Red fighters is a band of armed mercenaries working for Joyce,” the statement said, “They were not mere civilian volunteers. They were employed for the mayor’s protection and instrument of his repressive rule.”

The NPA alleged the armed men were “agents of his (the mayor’s) criminal activities and illegal operations, which made them a legitimate target of the NPA’s tactical Offensives.”


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