CREMATED REMAINS. The remains of ranking New People's Army leader Jorge Madlos alias "Ka Oris" are turned over to his brother Rito Madlos in a ceremony witnessed by the local government, military, and police officials in Impasugong, Bukidnon on Thursday (Nov. 9, 2021). Rito, who traveled from Surigao City, was designated as the authorized family member to claim Ka Oris' cremated remains. (Photo courtesy of 4ID)

CAMP EVANGELISTA, Cagayan de Oro City - The local government unit (LGU) of Impasugong, in close coordination with the 4th Infantry (Diamond) Division (4ID), turned over the cremated remains of Jorge Madlos alias "Ka Oris" to his family on Thursday at the Impasugong town hall in Bukidnon.

Impasugong Mayor Anthony A. Uy formally turned over the cremains of Ka Oris to his younger brother, Rito Madlos, in a short and simple ceremony witnessed by LGU employees and personnel of the Army's 8th Infantry Battalion of the 403rd Infantry Brigade, 4ID, and personnel from Impasugong Municipal Police Station.

Rito, who traveled from Surigao City early Thursday dawn, was designated by the surviving Madlos siblings as the authorized family member to claim Ka Oris' cremated remains. He was accompanied by his driver.

Before the turnover, the LGU of Impasugong offered a mass for the eternal repose of the soul of Madlos and also provided cash aid. Mayor Uy expressed his sympathy to the Madlos family stressing that people have their own choices and deserve to be prayed for when they pass away, even for a most wanted New People's Army (NPA) commander like Ka Oris.

"Among gipaabot ang kinasing-kasing nga pagasubo sa pamilya Madlos. Ang lokal na panggamhanan sa Impasugong kauban ang kasundaluhan ug kapulisan naningkamot nga mahatagan ug desenti ug plastar nga papahulayan ang patayng lawas ni Mr Jorge Madlos. (The LGU of Impasugong together with the Philippine Army and the PNP endeavored to provide a decent and appropriate final resting place for the remains of Mr. Jorge Madlos)", Mayor Uy said.

In his message addressing LGU employees and personnel of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine National Police (PNP), Rito conveyed his sincere gratitude to the Impasugong LGU, especially to Mayor Uy and the Philippine Army particularly the 8IB, for the proper treatment and warm welcome, as well as for facilitating the ceremonial turnover. He added that he had mixed emotions about the death of his older brother whom he saw for the last time in 2014.

“We already offered his life to the God Almighty. His time is up. We cannot deny that he is a fugitive. I say this in fairness to everyone, in fairness to your service, pasalamat ako gihapon kay luyo sa iyang pagka-fugitive, inyu gihatagan sya ug serbisyo na di nakita sa among pamliya. On behalf of the Madlos family of Surigao del Norte and so with my family affiliates in Surigao, I am very thankful for all these efforts that you showed to us, salamat salamat kaayu ninyo”, Rito emotionally said.

The LGU of Impasugong facilitated the processing and release of the death certificate to Rito, while the certificate of the cremation and authority to cremate was made available upon request.

Meanwhile, Mayor Uy also led the turnover of the cremated remains of Eighfel Dela Peña alias Pika/Maui to her mother, Normelita Dela Peña, at the mayor’s office on November 8.

Dela Peña’s remains were brought to her hometown in San Luis, Agusan del Sur. Likewise, the LGU of Impasugong provided cash assistance and two sacks of rice to the Dela Peña family.

In a statement, Major General Romeo S Brawner Jr, commander of the 4ID, thanked the LGU of Impasugong for extending support and assistance.

He said with the cremains of Ka Oris and Ka Pika finally turned over to their respective families, he hoped it will put closure on the issues raised on their deaths and let them rest in peace.

“Once again, our sincerest condolences to the bereaved families of Jorge Madlos and EIghel Dela Peña. True to our commitment to respecting human rights consistent with the rule of law and in abiding with the existing COVID19 protocols and guidelines, the remains were now properly turned over to their respective families. Though your AFP claimed victory and that justice has been served for the people, we offer our prayers to them, may their souls rest in peace”, Brawner said.

He also urged the Communist Party of the Philippines-NPA-National Democratic Front of the Philippines to stop saving face and creating lies to deceive the people, and instead own to their sins and hold their leaders and members accountable and responsible for all the crimes and injustices they have committed for the longest time against the people.

“We are confident that the Madlos and Dela Peña families will not allow the remains of their loved ones to be used and dragged by the CPP-NPA-NDF’s propaganda. We appeal to them to let Jorge Madlos and EIghel Dela Peña finally rest in peace. Your 4ID will now move forward. We need to push further, there is still so much work that needs to be done. We shall continue to focus on the most important and still daunting task ahead, the end-game of the local communist armed conflict”, Brawner added. (PR)