A list of 72 individuals, most of them politicians, with alleged links to the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) in Negros Occidental surfaced over the weekend.
The list, entitled “Alleged NPA Supporters” coming from an anonymous source, included the names of an incumbent provincial board member, two incumbent mayors, one incumbent vice mayor, and two incumbent town councilors, all based in the southern part of the province.
The list also includes several barangay officials, a priest, and a former town mayor.
The names in the list of alleged supporters of the CPP-NPA are being withheld by Negros Daily Bulletin (NDB) pending their reaction to their inclusion in the list.
Col. Benedict Arevalo, commander of the 303rd Infantry Brigade (303IB), confirmed yesterday that some names in the list circulated during the weekend match the list of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).
He said the list that was sent to several media outlets over the weekend did not come from the AFP.
Arevalo said they plan to call the attention of the officials included in the list.
They will be warned on their alleged support, utilization and links to the rebel movement, he said, adding however that no charges will be filed against those in the list.
Arevalo said they will also coordinate with the Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office (NOCPPO) for a possible joint investigation.
“They are however considered innocent until proven guilty,” Arevalo said.
He added that he will not judge those in the list, but said they will eventually know who are really supporting the rebels, saying they are receiving their reports from former NPA rebels.* (NDB)