HEAVILY-ARMED New People’s Army guerrillas launched a series of attacks in Talakag, Bukidnon on Wednesday robbing several civilians and injuring two government troops in a firefight, the Police Regional Office 10 reported yesterday.
Bukidnon Police Provincial Office director Colonel Roel Lami-ing said wounded in the clash in Sitio Dungawon Tinaytayan, Bgy. San Miguel, Talakag were Private First Class Sarez, of the Army’s Special Forces, and militiaman Exar Libugan.
Sarez and Libugan were among the members of the First Special Forces Battalion based in Kibangay, Lantapan, Bukidnon who rushed to Talakag following reports of the NPA atrocities only to be met with heavy gunfire from the rebels.
Lami-ing said members of the 1004th Regional Mobile Force Battalion based in Bgy. Tagbak, Talakag also clashed with the rebels in the same area after they ransacked the 24/7 Bonsetas II establishment and disarmed security guard Felipe Lundaan around 4 a.m.
The gunmen also held at gunpoint a 19-year-old saleslady and one minor in a nearby convenience store before ransacking the company bunkhouse and the residences of ex-militiaman Ely Sulod and civilian Nikel Salungay.
The official said around 6 a.m. Wednesday, a team of officers from the 1004th RMFB went to the area but were ambushed by the guerrillas who planted an improvised explosive device on the road to derail responding policemen.
No casualty was reported on the side of the police officers but the tire and steering wheel of a passing delivery truck being driven by Raymart Lake, 21, were damaged by the IED explosion. Luckily, Lake and his passengers were unharmed in the incident.
Lami-ing said members of the First SF Battalion who tried to reinforce the policemen were ambushed by the guerrillas injuring Libugan and Sarez who were taken to the Gonzales Emergency Hospital in Lantapan for treatment.
The official said that members of the Talakag Municipal Police Station led by Captain Dominador Orate Jr. set up checkpoints to prevent the rebels from fleeing the area.
PRO10 director Brigadier General Rolando B. Anduyan has ordered the filing of criminal charges against the attackers.