Three dump trucks and a bus used in plantation operations by multinational Del Monte Philippines Inc. (DMPI) were paralyzed by Red fighters of the New People’s Army-Misamis Oriental morning of October 6.
Ka Nicolas Marino, the NPA unit’s spokesperson, confirmed the armed action which happened at Sitio Talambao, Brgy. Bulahan, Claveria, Misamis Oriental. Police reports estimated the equipment destroyed at P20 million.
Del Monte plantation operations span 26,000 hectares of ancestral lands in Misamis Oriental and Bukidnon. The company generated a net profit of $18.7 million (P935 million at P50:$1) in the first quarter of 2020 alone, sustaining its growth even with the Covid-19 lockdown.
NPA-Misamis Oriental paralyzed the company’s equipment to sanction the company and respond to the people’s clamor to stop its expansion plans.
Unable to pin down the Red fighters, the 58th Infantry Battalion staged a 15-minute fake encounter in the hinterlands of the same barangay on October 8 and arrested a certain “James,” who they claim to be part of the NPA’s recent offensive. A caliber. 38 pistol and a command detonated explosive was “captured” in the supposed encounter.
A day before the attack against DMPI, October 5, another unit of the NPA-Misamis Oriental attacked troopers of Mindanao Energy’s (MINERGY) Special CAFGU Active Auxiliary stationed in Brgy. Quezon, Balingasag. Red fighters also reportedly paralized a backhoe and a dump truck of a destructive quarry operation in Purok 5, Barangay Napaliran in Balingasag on October 8.
Apart from defending the people and the environment against destructive plantations, mining and quarry operations, “the NPA-Misamis Oriental vows to frustrate the militarization and intensified attacks of the AFP,” Marino ended in his statement.