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President Duterte yesterday said he’s ready to wage an all-out war with the New People’s Army (NPA) even if it takes another 50 years.
Duterte made the declaration after visiting the wake of policemen killed during an ambush Wednesday in Bansalan, Davao del Sur.
One of those killed, PO1 Saro Mangotara, a member of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Scout Class 107-2016 “Himagsik”, was immediately laid to rest following the Muslim tradition and customs.
Duterte was angry and furious at the communist rebels, whom the military tagged as responsible for the daylight attack.
“Let them choose. Ako, I’m ready for an all-out war. Another 50 years if need be. What you give, you receive also,” Duterte said.
“Fifty years na tayong nag-aaway. So let’s extend it for another 50 years. But they’ll never have the chance to gain power,” he added.
Duterte said he will allow the police and the military to use all available assets.
“Eroplano, jet, use them. Gamitin ang rockets. Collateral damage? Pasensya,” he said.
The Chief Executive apologized to the public that the “gory” incident had to happen but assured everybody that the Armed Forces (AFP) and the PNP will respond accordingly.
Also killed in the attack were Rolly Belayo, Joe Narvasa with Mangotara and all members of the Bansalan Police Station; and female investigator PO3 Jayden May Rabor.
PO3 Allen Arnado, another female prober, survived the attack by jumping off their vehicle and landing in a deep canal.
Duterte also said the rebels committed ‘ideological cannibalism’ since they devour their own countrymen for the sake of revolution.
“As the revolutionary ideology will put it, it’s a kind of ideological cannibalism because you devour your own kind,” he said.
“You kill your own brothers and sisters in the name of revolution,” he added.
Chief Supt. Manuel Gaerlan, Police Regional Office 11 director, said the NPA has become bandits contrary to the ideologies being propagated by their group.
Gaerlan said the PNP personnel in Bansalan, Davao del Sur were only responding to an incident together with the SOCO team to assist in the conduct of an investigation.
In Manila, Interior and Local Government Secretary Ismael Sueno yesterday ordered an investigation of the ambush.
“I have clear instructions to our Chief PNP to respond accordingly and deliver swift action against the suspects who are allegedly members of a lawless armed group. Our police force will get into the bottom of this case,” Sueno said. (With reports from PNA, Chito Chavez and Francis Wakefield) (ARGYLL GEDUCOS)