NPA admits torching mine drilling rig
(The Philippine Star) - May 7, 2013 - 7:09pm

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet  - New Peoples Army guerrillas have claimed responsibility over the April 26 torching of a drilling rig of the  Far South East Gold Resources Inc., a subsidiary of the African-based Goldfields Resources Corp. , in the mining district of Mankayan, Benguet.

The Benguet-based Jennifer “Maria” Cariño Command” of the NPA said “(it) was a punishment of the mining company, and it is in support and solidarity with the people of Mankayan and with people of other places against the destructive mining operations.”

Cordillera police director Chief Supt. Benjamin Magalong earlier said four men armed with M16 and M203 rifles put ablaze the drilling machine being used by the mining firm in confirming gold ore in Ampontoc, Colalo, Mankayan at around 6:43 p.m. on  April 26, quoting  Lawrence Pasiwen, supervisor of the private Warrior Security Agency.

Mankayan policemen led by Chief Inspector Ferdinand Oydoc, a team from the 50th Infantry Battalion of the Philipine Army under 1Lt. Roger Durada and another team from the Benguet Police Public Safety Battalion led by Supt. Lambert Suerte tried to run after the armed men but failed to catch them.

In the 70’s,  communist guerrillas also burned a drilling rig of Lepanto Consolidated Mining Co., which has partnered with Goldfields in the FSGRI’s projects in Mankayan.

FSGRI, amid local protests, has pursued  its confirmatory drillings in several areas in Mankayan despite heavy oppposition to the operations.

The FSGRI has remained mum on the attack, while the NPA said ”the drilling operations in Colalo is for the planned construction of Tailings Dam 5B of (Lepanto Consolidated Mining Co. for its expansion of mining operations in Mankayan and the nearby municipality of Tadian, Mt. Province."

“The setting up of the tailings dam 5B means the grabbing anew of many hectares of land of the people of Barangays Colalo and Bedbed by LCMC,”  the NPA said. - Artemio A. Dumlao

 

ARTEMIO A BARANGAYS COLALO AND BEDBED BENGUET BENGUET POLICE PUBLIC SAFETY BATTALION BENJAMIN MAGALONG CHIEF INSPECTOR FERDINAND OYDOC CHIEF SUPT LEPANTO CONSOLIDATED MINING CO MANKAYAN
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