RMG takes lives at Tinoc, Ifugao Residents decry presence of uniformed thugs

Ka Wigan Moncontad
Nona Del Rosario Command, NPA-Ifugao
July 3, 2011

Last 02 July, a member of the Regional Mobile Group (RMG) of the Philippine National Police (PNP) gunned down two fellow police officers and two more civilians while injuring another. One of the civilian victims is the birthday celebrant's father who made the mistake of extending kindness to armed yet undisciplined elements. After such grim incident, it becomes even clearer to the people that the RMG is not to be trusted.

"Out of the benevolence of the Tinoc residents, these uniformed thugs were permitted to set up base at the said municipality. Out of respect to the kakailian tradition, they were allowed to stay despite the inconvenience and anxiety they inflict on the residents. The RMG, similar to the mercenary soldiers' practice to use the civilian population as their shield, camped out in the midst of a residential area. It is where they spend their days, drinking boisterously and propagating anti-social activities. Yet, as all rottening structures under the equally disintegrating state are prone to do, the RMG exposed itself as perilous, not just on the livelihood, but also on the lives of the residents of Tinoc," Ka Wigan Moncontad, spokesperson for the New People's Army-Nona Del Rosario Command (NPA-NDRC) explained.

Such exposure is a confirmation of what the residents has long dreaded. Ever since the RMG occupied Tinoc, it has imposed unfair and anti-poor policies on the livelihood of the residents. The people decry the confiscation of their power saws and even the slabs of wood intended to improve their dwellings. Instead of invoking the traditional ili practice that permits the felling of trees except for commercial ends, conceited police officers indiscriminately seized valuable property. The RMG also disallowed the distribution of farm implements donated by non-government organizations, tagging the donors as Communist groups.

Moncontad said that the threat's escalation into a full-scale assault against the people's lives lies on the RMG's recklessness and indifference to the people's welfare. "Though majority of these lapdogs may be from the oppressed class of the peasantry and the proletariat, the PNP per se serves the interest of the oppressive class by ensuring the execution of its anti- people laws," he pointed out. Moncontad cited that its orientation aims to defend the interest of the affluent and powerful while its training equips officers to forget their humble backgrounds and instead employ arrogance and cruelty on their fellow farmers and workers.

"And yet," the spokesperson added, "such menace is but an ingredient of a severe and systematic tyranny against the marginalized class." Aside from the well-grounded fear of living alongside armed and undisciplined elements of the state, there is the very material danger of anti-people foreign capitalist projects such as destructive geothermal projects, large-scale mining and hydro power plants -- all of which tasks the PNP, along with the Philippine Army, to clear the way for these capitalist ventures. Once these are allowed to operate, communities, residences, school complexes, rice terraces and garden areas, will suffer critical damages. "These injuries against the land, life and resources of the people of Ifugao are additional burdens to the present backward methods of farming and insufficiency of social services."

The NPA-NDRC thus engages the residents of Tinoc and the rest of the marginalized peoples to stand up against the tyranny of the RMG. Moncontad challenged the people and the political leaders of Ifugao, "It is high time you reclaim the space that the RMG insolently occupied. Justice for Dondon Madino, Marcial Kalyaen and the other victims will not culminate at the capture and incarceration of the individual who squeezed the trigger. Genuine justice for the victims can only be brought about after the RMG pulls out from the area, compliant with the demands of the people who have long suffered from the former's lack of dicipline and subservience to an anti-poor government. Genuine and complete justice for the people can only be achieved upon the collapse of the present ruling system and the emergence of a people's democratic government." ###