DAVAO CITY – The National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) has ordered the release of three cops held captive by the New People’s Army in Surigao del Norte today (Thursday).
In a statement by Luis Jalandoni, chairperson of NDF’s peace negotiating panel, and read by Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte Wednesday, “I hereby order the release of the Prisoners of War, named thereafter Police Officer One (PO1) Democratico Bundok Pulvorasa, PO1 Michael Andara Contemplo and Juney Amper.”
“I will fetch them tomorrrow. They will be released tomorrow, I willl get them,” Duterte said.
The NPA captured Amper in Malimono, Surigao del Norte last November 12, and Polvorosa, Jr and Unclara last November 16 in Alegria.
Their release was stalled last month, as Ka Maria Malaya, spokesperson of the NDF-Northeast Mindanao, said in a statement, was “due chiefly to the AFP’s (Armed Forces of the Philippines) refusal to temporarily withdraw their COPD (Community Outreach for Peace and Development operatives from the area.”
Aglipayan Bishop Rhee Timbang, head of the Third Party Group helping the release of the cops, confirmed the release order.
“Yes, that is correct. The release will be done in the province of Surigao del Sur,” said Timbang.
Timbang said they have learned that the Army also issued a Suspension of Military Operations (SOMO) last February 20.
Timbang said that he is “confident that the Army will comply” and that “Duterte surely made necessary steps to ensure the safety of the release.”
Timbang also said the family of the cops were already informed.(davaotoday.com)