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Justice, President

Wife asks PRRD’s help for NPA slay of militiaman, minor

BUTUAN CITY – The four-month pregnant wife of a government militiaman who was gunned down by the communist New People’s Army (NPA) in Surigao del Sur has called on President Rodrigo R. Duterte to help serve justice for her husband and for the arrest of the perpetrators.

Bebelyn Bapor Martinez is seen crying for justice while narrating how her husband was killed by the NPA in her presence, in a video sent online on Monday by Datu Rico H. Maca, the Indigenous People Mandatory Representative (IPMR) of San Miguel, Surigao del Sur.

Authorities said Bebelyn’s 19-year-old husband Arnel, a member of the Citizen Armed Forces Geographical Unit (CAFGU), was killed by the NPA on August 28 in the Surigao del Sur town of Madrid along with his cousin, identified as 17-year-old Jeffrey Cuarteron.

According to the police and military authorities, the victims were shot to death by NPA guerillas led by a certain Noel Tumarlas Alacre, the leader of Sandatahang Yunit Pampropaganda (SYP) of the NPA’s Guerrilla Front 30.

“They have no mercy. My husband already fell to the ground but they continued to shot him twice on the back,” Bebelyn said in the local dialect.

She testified that she was present when the rebels arrived on the evening of Aug. 28 at their residence in Barangay Bayugo in Madrid, where the rebels immediately shot her husband and his cousin.

“I was pleading for mercy and kneeled down and would even kiss their feet for them to stop the shooting but they did not listen. They continued to fire their guns on my husband,” Bebelyn said.

Bebelyn hopes her concerns would reach President Duterte, saying only him could help bring the perpetrators to justice.

“I am appealing to the President, with the hope that he could hear my voice. Please help us now. We want justice for our slain family members,” Bebelyn said.

She described the rebels as “merciless,” pointing out that they did not even spare the life of her husband’s cousin, who was a minor.

“They (the NPA) said they are righteous people. But why are they killing people like pigs? They have no mercy. They are evil,” Bebelyn said.

She also expressed uncertainty about the future of her unborn child with the loss of her husband.

“How will I survive with my child?” Bebelyn said, pointing out that her husband was the family’s only breadwinner.

Aside from his regular allowance for his services as a CAFGU, she said Arnel had other income sources such as gold panning when he was off duty.

In a recent interview, Maca said Martinez–a member of the Manobo tribe–was off-duty and had just arrived home when shot and killed by the NPA. Maca said the NPA rebels are now into “killing-spree in Surigao del Sur as they continue to kill helpless IP leaders and members”.

The NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. (PNA)

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