NDFP condemns AFP abduction of Rolly Panesa and false claim he is Benjamin Mendoza

NDFP International Information Office
October 13, 2012

The peace negotiating panel of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines today demanded the immediate and unconditional release of civilian security guard Rolly M. Panesa whom the Armed Forces of the Philippines abducted on 5 October and mistakenly identified as a high-ranking official of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP). Also abducted with Panesa were his wife and two other companions, but were later released without charges.

The military announced on 6 October that a combined force of the AFP's 2nd Infantry Division and the Philippine National Police arrested top officials of the Communist Party of the Philippines. Colonel Generoso Bolina, AFP Southern Luzon Command spokesman, mistakenly identified Panesa as Benjamin Mendoza, purportedly the Secretary of the Southern Tagalog Regional Committee of the CPP, and a member of the CPP’s Central Committee. News reports also claimed that Panesa's wife was a member of the Executive Committee of the CPP's Southern Tagalog regional party committee.

“The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is up to its old tricks again of illegally arresting civilians and parading them as leaders of the revolutionary movement,” declared Luis Jalandoni, Chairperson of the NDFP Negotiating Panel. “They abduct, torture and detain people, and identify them as leaders of the revolutionary movement. In this case, it turns out that they arrested a civilian security guard."

Rolly Panesa is a security guard assigned at the ACP Compound in Eastwood, Quezon City, and a resident of F. Castillo Street, in Project 4, Quezon City.

“The NDFP condemns the arrest of Panesa and the violations of his rights, and we support his demand to be immediately freed from detention,” Jalandoni said. “He and his family must be indemnified for their illegal arrest, torture, and his continuing detention. All those trumped-up charges against him must be withdrawn.”

The CPP and the NDFP earlier stated that Benjamin Mendoza is a consultant of the NDFP in peace negotiations with the government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP/GPH). In press statements released to the media, they reiterated their demand that peace consultants be free from arrest, based on the provisions of the GRP-NDFP Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG).

Jalandoni added, “The blunder of Panesa’s arrest once again manifests the Aquino regime’s utter disdain for the agreements that the Manila government has forged with the NDFP. Under the terms of the JASIG, Benjamin Mendoza should not be arrested. Neither should NDFP consultants Alan Jazmines, Tirso Alcantara, Renante Gamara, Eduardo Serrano, Eduardo Sarmiento and Jaime Soledad and other NDFP consultants.

“These consultants continue to be imprisoned because the Aquino regime and its minions in the military and police have a propensity for mocking the JASIG,” Jalandoni declared.


Roselle Valerio
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