CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines — A ranking leader of the New People’s Army in Mindanao was killed in an encounter with government troops in Bukidnon, the military said on Tuesday.
A report circulated to media by the Philippine Army’s 16th Infantry Battalion said Pedro Codaste, also known as Ka Gonyong, Ka Serv and his companion, a certain Ka Zandro were killed.
Codaste, along with the late ‘Ka Oris’ Jorge Madlos, were considered as top commanders of the NPA in Mindanao. He was 70 years old.
Lieutenant Colonel Neil Armstrong Batayola, commander of the 16th IB, said Codaste and his companion were killed during a 30-minute gunfight in Barangay Kalabugao in Impasugong, Bukidnon.
Ka Oris, knows as the spokesperson of the National Democratic Front Mindanao and the NPA, was also killed in Impasugong in Barangay Dumalaguing on October 30, 2021.
Bayatola said Codaste held a ranking post in the NPA being the deputy secretary of Komisyon Mindanao (KOMMID).
Codaste was released from prison in 2016 to join the peace negotiations as a consultant of the NDF. He joined Alfredo ‘Ka Paris’ Mapano as among consultants coming from the Northern Mindanao Region.
A year later, Codaste and several NDFP consultants were ordered arrested after the talks were terminated by the national government.
Mapano later surrendered to the government but is now detained facing court cases.
Codaste was a former secretary general of the NPA’s Guerrilla Front 4A in Agusan del Sur during the early ‘90s then later became secretary of the North Central Mindanao Regional Committee in 2009. He was elected to the Central Committee during the CPP 2nd Congress in 2016. (davaotoday.com)