By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
President Rodrigo Duterte was in Guihulngan City, Negros Oriental yesterday to pay tribute to the six police officers killed in last week’s New People’s Army (NPA) ambush and presented them with posthumous awards.
During a short press conference, the president said he is saddened by the loss and noted he has to control his anger with the NPA.
He took a swipe at Communist Party of the Philippines leader Jose Maria Sison, who currently resides in Norway.
“You declare a revolution here yet you are hiding in another country?” he asked. “If you are really sincere, then come home and fight.”
Duterte also criticized the insincerity of the NPA, saying they schedule a ceasefire but conduct attack prior to implementation.
“They have been fighting for 50 years, but they want another 50 years of fighting and killing,” the president stated.
The families of the slain officers each received P270,000 in financial assistance, along with P250,000 for the widows of the police officers, enrollment in the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), food allowances, and an education fund.
Financial and educational assistance was also provided to the three wounded cops, who are still recovering at the Silliman University Medical Center in Dumaguete City.
Last week, Guihulngan City police chief, Police Superintendent Arnel Arpon, alongside Senior Police Officer 2 (SPO2) Mecasio Tabilon, SPO2 Chavic Agosto, SPO1 Jeseal Ancheta, Police Officer 2 (PO2) Alfredo Dunque, and PO2 Alvin Paul Bulandres were killed after their convoy was attacked by 60 armed NPA members at Sitio Mandi-e, Barangay Magsaysay in the said city./WDJ