MASBATE CITY, Masbate Province – The New People’s Army -Jose Rapsing Command (JRC-NPA) based in this province clarified reports over the death of a minor teenager, 15- year old student Vincent Jaylord Veracis Pequiro, and the wounding of 23-year-old Remark Vergara.
The rebel group said they were being linked by mainstream and social media as “allegedly responsible” for the gun slaying of Pequiro and wounding of Vergara on September 16, 4:30 pm at Barangay Libertad, Cawayan, this province.
JRC-NPA spokesperson Luz Del Mar said it was the group of Army soldiers, 3rd Platoon, Alpha Coy, 2nd IB, PA, led by a certain Banaloyos, which attended a family reunion fiesta of Bordaje Family, whom their companion Ondo Bordaje belonged to the clan, when the shooting incident occurred.
Del Mar said, in a posted statement, the soldiers were drunk and one soldier carelessly dropped a misplaced rifle that accidentally discharged, causing him immediate embarrassment. “To save face from public ridicule”, the soldier opened fire at a group of men at a basketball court at a nearby plaza hitting Pequiro and wounding Vergara.
According to the NPA statement, Vincent Jaylord Pequiro was the third minor killed by government troops of 2nd IB in the province, and the other two victims were siblings from Barangay Panan-awan, Cawayan.
In a related move, the National Democratic Front-Bicol Region (NDF-Bicol) said in a statement released September 19, the killing of teenage student Pequiro by state troops adds up to the piling list of human rights abuses and extra-judicial killings.
It said there were no NPA units within the area where the killing of the teen age student took place.
NDF-Bicol said the government soldiers were drunk inside a Day-Care Center when the accidental discharge of a rifle took place and hitting of a fellow soldier.
The statement said, to cover up the accidental firing, the soldiers started firing toward the neighborhood as “if to make a semblance they were being attacked by the NPA.” Their firing hit Pequiro and wounded Vergara. [BicolToday.com]