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Nation

NPAs to step up attacks against Caraga mine sites

- Ben Serrano -

BUTUAN CITY – Claiming they have the capabilities to strike anywhere at any given time, the leadership of the New People’s Army operating in northeastern Mindanao pushed their warnings anew against what they described as stubborn mining companies operating in Caraga Region to pay their social obligations to host communities and indigenous people who are affected by their mining operations.

Jorge Madlos bearing the revolutionary name Ka Oris who now heads the CPP/NPA/NDF’s Mindanao Commission during the 40th year anniversary celebration of the CPP/NPA/NDF held at the mountainous area of Tubay, Agusan del Norte, said they will step up attacks against unrepentant mining firms who still refuse to pay the natives and host communities.

Madlos who was reported to be seriously ill with kidney ailment and other diseases outlined to fellow NPA members, guerilla fighters and visitors during the anniversary celebration the success of the communist rebels’ tactical offensives.

Earlier, Madlos’ wife, Maria Malaya who is NDF-Northeastern Mindanao Region spokesperson in their Dec. 23 press statement claimed the successful early dawn of Dec. 22 raids in Tubay town was meant to punish alleged abusive mining firm and alleged corrupt local politicians they name.

NPA rebels, at about 12:30 a.m. of Dec. 22, almost in simultaneous manner raided the Tubay Police Station, burned the Globe cell site and attacked the SRMI office in Barangay La Fraternidad.

Contrary to police and military reports, the NPA press statement hinted they took away 21 firearms from Tubay Police Station and SRMI security forces.

Malaya alleged that politicians and their allies were the only ones who benefited from all mining activities in said town and in the entire province while leaving host communities and indigenous people agonizing due to social injustices.

In 2006, 13 tribal leaders of the Manobo and Mamanwa tribes who own ancestral domain in the area where the nickel mining firm, SRMI is operating have signed a memorandum of agreement with said mining firm owner and construction magnate Manila-based Eric Gutierrez.

Despite the intervention of no less than Butuan Bishop Juan de Dios Pueblos, D.D., and Diocese of Butuan IP-Apostolate Fr. Lito Clase, through their pet organization, Catholic Church-led Caraga Conference for Peace and Development in the October 2008 meeting with all stakeholders at the Bishop’s Home, lumads claimed until now, S.R. Metals failed to pay them any single centavo.

Further, SRMI spokesperson former Butuan City Councilor Ryan Anthony Culima in a text message to The STAR admitted SRMI has not paid the indigenous people yet because concerned government agencies like the National Commission on Indigenous People failed to settle the issue of who among contesting lumads will be paid.

APOSTOLATE FR

BARANGAY LA FRATERNIDAD

BUTUAN BISHOP JUAN

BUTUAN CITY COUNCILOR RYAN ANTHONY CULIMA

CARAGA CONFERENCE

CARAGA REGION

CATHOLIC CHURCH

DIOCESE OF BUTUAN

DIOS PUEBLOS

ERIC GUTIERREZ

TUBAY POLICE STATION

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