LEGAZPI CITY, 23Aug2013 (PNA) – Eight New People’s Army (NPA) rebels set on fire four dump trucks and a cement mixer at a road construction site in an upland village of Pio Duran town in Albay at about 2:40 p.m. Thursday, a police official said Friday.
Sr. Inspector Larry Prepotente, Pio Duran police chief, said the NPA dissidents swooped down on an ongoing government road construction project in Barangay Salvacion, an upland village some 15 kilometers from Pio Duran town proper.
Prepotente said the village is a hotbed of communist guerrillas operating in Pio Duran town, which is 66 kilometers away from this city.
The NPA attack surprised some 53 construction workers who were unloading construction materials from the trucks while some workers were operating a cement mixer, the police official said in a phone interview.
He said the rebels gathered all the workers in one place and asked them to turn off their cell phones, then later set on fire the trucks and the cement mixer with a total worth of P1.2 million.
Propetente said the trucks and cement mixer were owned by Geronimo David, a project contractor.
Albay Rep. Fernando Gonzales (LP, 3rd District) said in a phone interview that the upland road cementing project is a P3-million farm-to-market road being implemented jointly by the Department of Agriculture (DA) and the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) in Albay.
Gonzales said the farm-to-market road project was implemented on his request but not included in his Priority Development Assistance Fund.
The project will benefit hundreds of farmers living in Barangay Salvacion and neighboring upland villages of Pio Duran, he said. (PNA)