SECURITY. The Joint Task Force Negros continues to provide security and peacekeeping efforts in Negros Oriental. The task force was created after the March 4 massacre in Pamplona town where Gov. Roel Degamo and eight others were killed while 17 more were injured. (Photo by Judy Flores Partlow)

DUMAGUETE CITY – The Joint Task Force Negros (JTFN) will continue its peace and security mission even as government operatives concluded their search operations at a sugar mill compound in Sta. Catalina, Negros Oriental over the weekend.

Maj. Cenon Pancito III, JTFN spokesperson, told the Philippine News Agency on Monday that security threats remain in Negros Oriental, especially with recent developments related to the murder of Gov. Roel Degamo and eight others in Pamplona town on March 4.

“Based on the search warrant that the CIDG (Criminal Investigation and Detection Group) had obtained, the series of operations ended already this past weekend. However, we really cannot say what will happen next as this will depend on the course of the investigation,” Pancito said.

The CIDG conducted a series of operations, starting on March 24, at the HDJ-Bayawan Agri-Venture Corp. at Sitio Tolong, Barangay Caranoche in Sta. Catalina based on a search warrant issued by a Mandaue City court.

Pancito said the CIDG has not reported any new finds since the recovery of documents and personal items, purportedly belonging to suspects in the Pamplona massacre.

The sugar mill property is owned in part by former governor Pryde Henry Teves.

JTFN’s task, for now, is to secure the witnesses and their families here as cases are now being filed against 11 suspects who are in government custody at the national level, Pancito said.

“There is still a reason for the task force to exist as we all know that despite the arrest of the suspects, the Degamo case does not end there,” he added. (PNA)