Sunday, August 22, 2010

Confiscated military documents reveal Confidential Agent Labawan and AFP collusion -NPA

Confiscated military documents reveal
Confidential Agent Labawan and AFP collusion -NPA

Rigoberto F. Sanchez
Merardo Arce Command, NPA - Southern Mindanao
August 19, 2010

It is expected for Col. Domingo Tutaan, deputy commander of the 1003rd Brigade-AFP, to quickly deny that a 'pangayaw' is being waged by AFP henchman Ruben Labawan in Paquibato, Davao City. Col. Tutaan tries vainly to shield B/Gen. Eduardo del Rosario and mitigate the 1003rd Brigade-AFP's criminal complicity in the latest armed violence against civilians attributed to AFP brainchild Task Force Gantangan and 'Bagani' Forces.

"Datu" Ruben Labawan is del Rosario's and the AFP's stooge. Labawan's 'pangayaw' was launched at the behest of B/Gen. del Rosario and the 1003rd Brigade-10th Infantry Division-AFP. Documents seized by the 1st Pulang Bagani Company-NPA during a military action reveals the criminal conspiracy of the 1003rd Brigade-10th ID-AFP under B/Gen. del Rosario and notorious military agents masquerading as tribal leaders like "Datu" Ruben Labawan. The documents, among others, reveal the following:

1) acknowledgement receipts in different dates since late last year to early this year issued by the 1003rd Bde-AFP and signed by B/Gen. del Rosario showed Confidential Agent Ruben Labawan were issued Garand and M14 rifles, ammunitions, Cammenga military compass and Motorola GP-68 radios "to be used in rendering official duties" under the 1003rd Bde-AFP;

2) a liquidation squad is being covertly funded by the 1003rd Brigade-AFP. This Special Operations Group is composed of 14 Lumad thugs handpicked by Labawan, and are to be provided, among others, complete combat uniforms, firearms, cellphones and UHF radios;

3) Labawan and his band of Lumad thugs formed a 168-strong armed group dubbed Bahani Long Range Platoons (BLRP). This AFP paramilitary unit is divided into 12 platoons coming from 12 sitios and Barangays in Paquibato District, Davao City.

The so-called 'Alsa Lumad' as well as indigenous bandit groups calling themselves Bagani Force are AFP-concocted, and stage-managed by the 1003rd Bde-AFP under the so-called Task Force Gantangan, a nation-wide "counter-insurgency" blueprint aimed against revolutionary forces. Clearly, these paramilitary forces were created not to defend the rights of indigenous peoples but to serve the AFP counter-revolutionary objectives as cheap and expendable cannon fodder.

Labawan is a bogus tribal leader. He is more of a tribal dealer capitalizing on the poor lumads to cut deals with the reactionary government and agri-corporations than a legitimate representative of the Ata-Manobos. His aggressive recruitment of Lumads as CAFGUs is not about peace and development but more on escalating armed violence and militarizing Lumad communities. Labawan sits as chair of the AFP-created Supreme Tribal Council for Peace and Development, a group of ATADI-ALAMARA bandits who have cashed in on their acquisition of CADTs to allow agri-corporations to establish plantations in their so-called Lumad ancestral domains.

Labawan has established a menacing reputation among the Lumad community not by traditional authority bestowed on him by the Ata-Manobo tribe but by his close association with the military and his active participation in combat operations against the revolutionary mass base. Labawan is a confidential agent of the 1003rd Bde-AFP, and has undergone three-month basic Cafgu training under the 73rd IB-AFP in 2001 when B/Gen. del Rosario was still the battalion commander.

Labawan's mandate did not come from the Lumad community which he claims to represent. Instead, he takes orders from his immediate superior, Datu Limbuttong, who is none other than B/Gen. del Rosario. Labawan is actively involved in AFP strategic "counter-insurgency" planning. His most recent participation was the Final Coordinating Conference OPORD (operation order) 02-10 "PANATINGON" held at the 1003rd Bde-AFP headquarters in Sto. Tomas, Davao del Norte, this April.

As an armed enemy combatant extremely hostile to the revolutionary mass base, Labawan is a legitimate object of NPA tactical offensives, contrary to his claim that he is being targetted by the NPA because of his 'peaceful' campaign to expose the 'excesses' of the revolutionary movement and bring development to the Lumad community. The only crusades that pre-occupy him are his frenzied brokering of ancestral lands for banana plantation expansion, soliciting rice and tinapa to be used in 'Alsa Lumad' pulong-pulong and his fanatical drive to enlist other Lumads into the AFP war machinery as CAFGU recruits.

This latest 'pangayaw' launched by Labawan's armed group aims to intimidate civilians -- both the Lumad and settlers to give up their farmlands so that his ATADI group could offer it to agri-corporations. Operating under a distorted sense of ancestral domain rights promoted by the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP), Labawan flaunts his right to usurp lands tilled by non-Lumads as an extension of his ancestral rights.

In the 1003rd Bde-AFP's so-called information and education campaigns to incite the Lumads to rise up against the NPA in Paquibato communities, del Rosario has personally instructed his minions to exact 'pangayaw' whenever an ALAMARA member, an ATADI-affiliated bandit, CAFGU member or AFP soldier gets killed in NPA actions within the area. Labawan has likewise declared that whenever an 'Alsa' Lumad Bagani or Cafgu or AFP soldier gets killed, it will be the civilian community who will have to pay for damages in the form of farm animals and blood money. If the people should fail to comply they will be threatened with 'pangayaw.' This is their version of 'gantangan sa hustisya.'

Shortly after his brother, PFC Kimpio Labawan of the 103rd Division Reconnaissance Company-10th ID-AFP, who also served as his bodyguard, was killed after figuring in a shootout at an NPA mobile checkpoint last August 6, Ruben Labawan then demanded blood money and farm animals as damage payment from civilians. Failing that, he declared 'pangayaw' against civilians in Paquibato. This is the system of 'gantangan sa hustisya' of Datu Limbuttong and Ruben Labawan.

The guns issued by Datu Limbuttong and the 1003rd Bde-AFP to Labawan's Lumad Special Operations Group-Bagani Force and his CAFGU recruits are being used to kill civilians. Guns issued by the bogus 'Datu Limbuttong' to the equally bogus 'Datu Labawan' were the same guns used to shoot civilian Julius Tamondes in Colosas, Paquibato. The many heinous crimes and bloodletting that has victimized civilians and non-combatants perpetrated by the erstwhile Alamara, ATADI's precursor, and now by the Bagani Force of the Task Force Gantangan can ultimately be attributed to Datu Limbuttong. The general has resuscitated the counterrevolutionary concept of the 'Alsa' Lumad which became his stepping stone to a higher rank. He has pitted Lumads against Lumads and Lumads against non-Lumad settlers and, blood is in his hands.

The NPA vows to fight for the Lumads and the people's right to genuine solidarity. In due time, the divide and rule tactic which has been used by foreign conquerors since time immemorial will be totally exposed and repudiated by the people. This crude recycling of an obsolete strategy by B/Gen. del Rosario shall miserably fail as the NPA and the people's revolutionary organs of political power gain further strength and greater influence in the countryside.