Datu Kaylo Bontulan, Manobo leader and official of Pasaka and Salugpungan, was killed by elements of the 3rd IB who indiscriminately bombed and strafed Barangay Kipilas, Kitaotao, Bukidnon on April 7. Datu Kaylo visited the area to check on the situation of Manobo evacuees from Talaingod. He was a known leader of Talaingod who has long participated in struggles in defense of Lumad ancestral lands.
Meanwhile, seven civilians were illegally arrested by state forces this April in Iloilo, Bulacan and Cagayan Valley.
In Iloilo, 61st IB elements arrested Remy Diaz, a member of Tumanduk Panay, in Barangay Masaroy, Calinog on April 16, at 12 a.m. The victim was then presented as an NPA member. Barangay officials who attempted to rescue the victim were threatened by the soldiers with gunshots.
In Bulacan, elements of the 48th IB abducted John Griefen Arlegui and Reynaldo Remias, Kadamay community organizers in Pandi, last April 13 at noon. They were accosted while mounting posters of Bayan Muna and senatorial candidate Neri Colmenares along Angat-Pandi Road. A day after, the victims were found under the custody of CIDG Malolos and were charged with fabricated cases of illegal possession of firearms.
In Cagayan, police operatives arrested Ariel Madriaga, Felix Madriaga, Jovito Madriaga and Adrian Panturgo in Barangay Dafunganay, Amulung on April 15, at around 5 a.m. Prior to the arrest, at around 3 a.m., unidentified gunmen surrounded the houses of the victims. The perpetrators then ransacked the houses and planted several rifles, ammunition and bombs as evidence against the victims.
Meanwhile, a campaign group of Bayan Muna headed for Abatan, Bauko, Mt. Province, was held at a military checkpoint. The soldiers took pictures of the group’s vehicle and members and illegally searched their personal belongings. They were also accused of hiding firearms.