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NPA claims killing of IP leader in Agusan del Norte

Members of the Mamanwa community gathered to pay their last respects to slain tribal leader Rodito Boklas, who was buried in a simple ceremony in Barangay Libas, Jabonga on Friday morning. PHOTO/Caraga PulisPio

The New People’s Army (NPA) on Friday admitted that it was behind the May 20 killing of Datu Rodito Lapugan Boklas, a tribal leader of Mamanwa community in Jabonga, Agusan del Norte.

Ka Oto, spokesperson of the NPA’s Front Committee 16 in Northeastern Mindanao, said the NPA “punished” Boklas “by death” for committing various crimes, including being an alleged military asset.

“Datu Boklas was a military asset, committed physical abuse against his wife and other forms of abuses against villagers during fits of drunken rage,” Oto said in a radio interview.

Boklas was cleaning his farm in Sitio Tagbuaya, Barangay Bangonay when at least five rebels abducted him on Monday afternoon.

A day later, his remains were discovered at the mountain of Amontay, also in Barangay Bangonay.

Boklas sustained stab wounds in the right side of his body.

The Police Regional Office in Caraga (PRO-13) called the killing “cruel.”

“The death of Datu Boklas widowed his wife and orphaned his four sons and 3 daughters. The entire police force condemned in the strongest manner the cruel killing of a peace-loving Lumad leader in Agusan del Norte,” PRO 13 director Brigadier General Gilberto Cruz said in a statement.

Boklas was buried in a simple ceremony in Barangay Libas on Friday morning. By CLC

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