Davao City – A father and his son who were on their way home were reportedly killed by army soldiers last Sunday in Tubod, Manurigao, New Bataan, Compostela Valley.
According to a statement released Monday by the Comval Davao East Coast Subregional Command of the New People’s Army, “while on the road early morning Sunday, combat troops of the Alpha company, 66th Infantry Battalion, Philippine Army, mercilessly killed farmer Rolando Dagansan, 43 years old, and his son Juda, 15.”
“The two Mandaya lumads came from harvesting corn in their farm in Cabetian and were on their way to their home in Taytayan at 3 am when the soldiers attacked them. Their bodies were badly disfigured with so many gunshot wounds; their heads were defaced while Rolando’s arm was amputated,” said Roel Agustin, spokesperson of the NPA.
This was also confirmed by the brother-in-law (name withheld) of Dagansan.
According to the brother-in-law in a telephone interview with Davao Today, around 60 soldiers of the 66thIB travelled to Barangay Manurigao at 10 pm last Saturday to have a medical mission in the community.
Dagansan, together with his son, paid a visit to his farm located in Sitio Cabetian, Barangay Manurigao on that day.
“On their way home, Sunday, they encountered the soldiers at around 3 am,” he said.
“We were informed of their deaths by Barangay Captain Francisco Aldueso of Barangay Andap,” he added.
He said that Aldueso arrived at around 10 pm, Sunday, in the house of their relatives to inform them of the incident. The bodies of the victims were then sent to Alar and arrived at their residence in Taytayan, Andap at around 11AM Monday.
The spokesman of the 10th Infantry Division has also confirmed the incident. In a text message sent to Davao Today, Captain Ernest Carolina said that “the incident looks accidental in nature by the way it is described, transpiring in pitch black darkness during a security patrol.”
But the relatives of the Dagansans believed otherwise.
“We believe that it is not an accident. They could have asked them first if they are civilians or NPAs,” Dagansan’s brother-in-law said.
“They have their identification cards with them including voter’s ID and Philhealth ID. My brother-in-law is also a member of the Barangay Defense System (BDS) which is also under the AFP,” he said.
He said a member of the 66th IB also sent him a text message apologizing for the incident.
“But we want the media to get a live footage here and see how they killed our relatives. The face of my nephew was totally blown up,” he said.
Carolina, on the other hand, assured that the perpetrators will be held accountable.
“It is now under police SOCO investigation, and we could only assure now that we will seek for justice to be served by holding accountable those who will be proven responsible,” he said. (davaotoday.com)