By KIMBERLIE NGABIT-QUITASOL
BAGUIO CITY — The Lejo Cawilan Command (LCC) of the New People’s Army (NPA) in Kalinga pays tribute to Marcos Aggalao, the 74-year old political detainee who recently died while in hospital arrest at the same time condemns the Government of the Philippines (GRP) for his death.
Aggalao died at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the Kalinga Provincial Hospital at 8:32 a.m. on Wednesday, September 13. He was confined there due to another stroke.
In a press statement, Ka Tipon Gil-ayab, spokesperson of the LCC balmed the GRP for its failure to keep its promise to release Aggalao. He said that Aggalao was among the aged and ailing political detainees who were supposed to be released as agreed upon during the peace negotiations.
“He died while battling the complications of a heart attack, he has been bed ridden since the last week of August but the GRP deprived him of his basic human rights disregarding his poor health condition,” Cawilan said.
In a July 26 letter to Judge Emmanuel Cacho Rasing of the RTC Branch 3, Jail Senior Insp. Rey Lopez, Tabuk warden, said Aggalao “cannot anymore attend to all his personal necessities alone.”
Lopez added that his cellmates have taken turns assisting him eat, helped him go to the comfort room and to take baths.
Cawilan said the AFP fabricated charges against Aggalao. He accused that the AFP capitalized on the personal interests of Pfc. Brendon Bugia and Pfc. Dondon Bagsao to facilitate Aggalao’s arrest. Bugio and Bagsao are Aggalao’s relatives.
The rebel spokes said Aggalao’s case is an example of the AFP’s IP-centri approach in its counter insurgency program. He said the AFP twist indigenous and tribal cultural practices and destroy the unity among indigenous peoples.
Cawilan called on members of the AFP and police froce who are also indigenous peoples not to allow themselves to be used against their fellow indigenous people. He said that revolutionary justice will be given to those who have commited crimes against the people.
Aggalao was arrested on September 10, 2016 by composite teams of the Kalinga police and Philippine Army’s 503rd brigade amid protests of community leaders. He was already ailing and weak at the time of his arrest.
Aggalao was detained even after a medical doctor certified that he suffered from dementia, pneumonia and hypertension on the day of his arrest.
Cawilan further called for the release of all political detainees. # nordis.net