Esperon hopes Makabayan bloc condemns NPA

National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr. hopes Makabayan bloc House members would condemn the New People’s Army

This after Jevilyn Cullamat, the daughter of  Representative , was killed in an encounter between the military and the NPA, the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines.

“It is my hope that the elected representatives of the Makabayan Bloc join us in condemning the NPA as an internationally recognized terrorist organization,” Esperon said in a press statement.

“It was my aspiration that this upsetting circumstance be seen as it truly is: the deception and exploitation of our youth and vulnerable communities,” he added.

The official added it was not too late for the Makabayan Bloc to unite with the government in ensuring “that no parent shall ever have to mourn the death of a child due to the manipulative nature of the NPA.”

Nine former rebels identified and confirmed that Cullamat died during a 45-minute encounter in Barangay San Isidro in Marihatag, Surigao Del Sur.

Esperon hopes Makabayan bloc condemns NPA

Reports said Jevilyn served as NPA’s medic and allegedly belonged to the Communist NPA Terrorist’s Sandatahang Yuniy Pampropaganda Platoon of the Guerilla Front 19, Northeastern Regional Committee (NEMRC).

Special forces recovered five high-powered firearms in the clash, including one M653 5.56 caliber rifle, three AK-47 rifles, and one M14 rifle. The military also seized Five backpacks with “ material and subversive documents” inside.

For Representative Cullamat, her daughter has fought against the “abuses” of the Armed Forces of the Philippines () against the lumads and other ethnolinguistic groups.

“Di ako nagtataka kung sumapi sa NPA ang aking anak dahil sa patuloy na nararanasan naming mga katutubo sa mga pagmamalupit at pang-aabuso ng AFP at ng kanilang mga paramilitary groups. Naranasan mismo ito ng aming pamilya… Si Jevilyn ay nasa wastong gulang na at kaya niyang magdesisyon para sa kaniyang sarili,” the Bayan Muna representative said.

“Naniniwala ako na makatwiran ang kaniyang ipinaglalaban pero ibang porma ang kanyang pinili para mapigilan ang pambubusabos sa aming mga lumad at katutubo at para magkaroon din ng makaturangang lipunan,” Cullamat said.