Thu, 20 Jan 2022

ZAMBOANGA CITY - The Army's 97th Infantry Battalion (IB) has turned over the remains of a female communist rebel, who was seriously wounded in a clash and abandoned to die by her comrades in the hinterlands of Sergio Osmena, Zamboanga del Norte.

"We brought the remains of the New People's Army (NPA) rebel fatality to the family last night (Sunday night) in Purok Kalingayan, Barangay Caluma, Tigbao, Zamboanga del Sur," Lt. Col. Nolasco Coderos Jr., the 97IB commander, said Monday in a phone interview.

Army troopers, together with the police and village officials, retrieved the remains of NPA member Daisy Jane Cimafranca, 27, on Saturday afternoon in Purok 4, Barangay Macalibre, Sergio Osmena.

Coderos said the cadaver of Cimafranca, who carries the aliases Racquel and Miggy, was initially identified by former members in the NPA and was later confirmed by her sister, Femie.

A succession of clashes transpired on December 1 and 3 between the combined elements of the 97IB and 42IB against the Guerilla Front Big Beautiful Country (GF BBC) of the NPA's Western Mindanao Regional Party Committee in the hinterlands of Polanco and Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte.

"We believe that alias Racquel was wounded during one of those encounters, and instead of rendering immediate medical attention, she was left behind by the NPAs for she will be a burden as she will slow down their escape from pursuing government troops," Brig. Gen. Leonel Nicolas, 102IB commander, said in a statement Monday.

The remains of Cimafranca were found in a crop storehouse in Barangay Macalibre by residents who reported the matter to authorities.

"This is a clear manifestation of how the NPA have total disrespect for the basic human rights of their members and that they even don't have the decency to give those who perished a proper burial," Nicolas said.

The 97IB and the municipal government of Sergio Osmena shouldered the pre-burial expenses of Cimafranca.

"We are saddened about the death of Daisy Jane, another life was wasted due to deceitful and wrong belief that poisoned the minds of all NPA members," Coderos said.

Coderos said they have yet to gather the details as to how and when did Cimafranca joined the NPA.

The Communist Party of the Philippines-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

The Anti-Terrorism Council also formally designated the National Democratic Front as a terrorist organization on June 23, 2021, citing it as "an integral and separate part" of the CPP-NPA that was created in April 1973. (PNA)

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