By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
The New People’s Army (NPA) yesterday condemned the killing of former Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office (NOPPO) member, Police Superintendent Santiago Rapiz, who was killed earlier this week during a buy-bust operation in Dipolog City, Zamboanga Del Norte.
The terror group called on the Philippine National Police (PNP) to conduct a “swift investigation.”
NPA Leonardo Panaligan Command spokesperson Ka JB Regalado said, based on their knowledge, Rapiz does not have a criminal record in Negros and was not involved in the sale or use of illegal drugs.
He also denied the slain police officer was on President Rodrigo Duterte’s “narco-list.”
“Rapiz only became a part of the 13,000 victims of ‘Oplan: Tokhang’ under the Duterte regime,” the spokesperson claimed.
Earlier, former Berya drug group bagman Ricky Serenio, in a statement, noted, Rapiz was named in his sworn affidavit as a major player in the Negros Occidental illegal drug trade and claimed the recent operation proved he was telling the truth.
Last Monday, Rapiz was killed by members of the Philippine National Police-Counter Intelligence Task Force and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency during a buy-bust operation, where the law enforcement official allegedly fought back after he found out he was transacting with an undercover cop.
Police recovered several sachets of suspected shabu, weighing around 25 grams; and a .45 caliber pistol.
The former NOPPO official, who previously served as police chief for Escalante City and Victorias City, along with formerly heading the NOPPO Police Community Relations office, was transferred to Police Regional Office-9 in 2016 after being named by Serenio./DGB, WDJ