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DILG on NPA killing children in N. Samar: “Mga walang kaluluwang salot sa lipunan”

Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo M. Año today expressed indignation as he condemned the communist terrorist group New People’s Army (NPA) for the death of two children in an encounter with the Philippine Army (PA) in Barangay Roxas, Catubig, Northern Samar on February 8, 2022.

“Mga walang puso at kaluluwa ang mga salot sa lipunan na ito. The NPA has, time and again, proven that they are terrorists,” Año said.

“The DILG condemns this heinous crime against two children who were unfortunately at the wrong place and time. We condole with their families and vow to give them the justice they deserve,” he added.

The DILG Chief said that the two children identified as Andre Mercado, 12, and Leandro Alivio, 13, died after the NPA opened fire on troops of the PA’s 803 Infantry Brigade who were patrolling in Barangay Roxas following reports of NPA’s extortion activities in the area. The victims, according to reports, were in the same area gathering coconuts.

He expressed dismay over NPA’s indiscriminate firing that led to the death of the two children. “They have crossed, yet again, the road to hell by killing two innocent children. Wala na silang pinipili. This is what their supposed cause for the people looks like. The bloodshed that knows no limit, targeting the vulnerable and the weak,” Año said.

According to PA’s 803rd Infantry Brigade’s Capt. Valben Almirante, Mercado died on the spot while Alivio succumbed to injuries after a few hours at the Northern Samar Provincial Hospital in Catarman town while undergoing treatment.

“Our patrolling troops were on the same location with the victims when the NPA launched an attack. We were in the area responding to reports that the NPA has been doing extortion activities,” Almirante said.

Other than Mercado and Alivio, two other children were wounded in the incident.

Año likewise called out the supporters of the terrorist groups saying that the blood of the two children and other victims of the NPA is on their hands as they have enabled and furthered the cause of communist terrorism for decades by incessantly funding and sustaining them.

He said that it is an open secret that aside from their extortion activities, the NPA has been receiving support and funding from various sources and has infiltrated even the public and private sectors.

“I hope that they finally realize that the communist terrorist group they are cuddling is killing innocent children. And they are the ones who fueled and created these monsters who are now on a killing spree against our countrymen, women, and children,” Año said.

Meanwhile, NTF-ELCAC voiced the same sentiment and enjoined the people to stand united under the whole of nation approach that will “put behind bars the leaders of this communist terrorist organization and finally put an end to this bloody and tragic chapter in our country’s history.”


PR Code No. 2022-02-12-01



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