LEGAZPI CITY, 29Aug2013 (PNA) – New People’s Army (NPA) rebels on Wednesday night set on fire three heavy equipment at a construction site in an upland village of San Fernando town in Ticao Island, Masbate, a Philippine National Police (PNP) official said Thursday.
Inspector Malu Calubaquid, PNP Bicol spokesperson, said a band of communist guerrillas attacked at about 7 p.m., Wednesday, a heavy equipment pool at Sitio Puro, Barangay Buenavista, an upland village some 12 kilometers from the town proper.
Calabaquid quoted a report from the San Fernando Municipal Police Office (SFMPO) that said a group of NPA dissidents raided the equipment pool and set on fire a steam roller, a bulldozer, and a payloader owned by engineer Alejandro Lim Jr., the contractor of a road construction project in the village.
In a phone interview, Calabaquid, however, could not tell the type of road project that is being implemented there and what agency or local government entity is doing it.
Merien Esber, Masbate provincial government spokesperson, said in a phone interview that they had not yet received a report from the SFMPO regarding the incident but, she said, they would check with the provincial engineering office whether there is an on-going road construction being implemented there.
Calabaquid said police investigators ruled out the extortion angle as behind the burning of the heavy equipment.
Ticao Island in Masbate is consists of the towns of San Fernando, Batuan, Monreal and San Jacinto. (PNA)