TACLOBAN CITY – Members of the New People’s Army (NPA) burned early Thursday 10 heavy equipment used by a private contractor to upgrade a road leading to rebel-infested communities in Las Navas, Northern Samar.
The Philippine National Police (PNP) regional office here reported that some 20 members of the communist terrorist group burned the equipment in San Francisco village around 4 a.m.
“The workers were called by rebels outside their barracks. They were asked why the government has to widen the road if it’s already passable to motorcycles,” the police said, citing accounts of Ian Adaraya Acebuche of CDU Construction.
Acebuche told the police that rebels are against the upgrading project since they do not want military trucks to use the road.
The private contractor based in Catarman, Northern Samar is tasked to build and widen the road network leading to communities threatened by the NPA.
The PHP32-million worth of equipment torched by rebels include two backhoes, a bulldozer, loader, dump truck, self-loading truck prime mover, crane, grader, welding generator set, and road roller.
Las Navas, a fourth-class town in Northern Samar with a population of 36,621, has been the center of propaganda by several organizations linked to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP)-NPA.
Northern Samar is considered an NPA lair in Eastern Visayas due to its poor road network, thick forests, high poverty incidence, and low level of education among residents.
The CPP-NPA, which has been waging a five-decade armed struggle against the government, is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines. (PNA)