By NITZ ARANCON
SEVEN barangay councils in Bukidnon have formally declared communist rebels and their supporters personae non gratae, according to the military over the weekend.
The barangays that made the declaration are the Caburacanan, St. Peter, Sila-e and Indalasa in Malaybalay City; and Canangaan, Freedom and Dalacutan in Cabanglasan town.
Officials of these barangay simultaneously passed separate resolutions on Feb. 20.
The barangay council also declared as “unwanted” organizations like Katribu, Anakpawis, Bayan Muna, Tamaraw, Gabriela and the League ug Filipino Students which the village officials called as communist legal fronts.
In their resolutions, the barangay councils expressed their support to the government.
The barangay officials cited as reason the attacks carried out by New People’s Army whom they accused of being responsible for burning heavy equipment, killings of indigenes, extortions, violations of international humanitarian laws and intimidation of civilians, according to Lt. Col. Ronald Illana, commander of the Army’s 8th Infantry Battalion.
Illana lauded the barangay councils for their resolutions.
Illana gave this message: “To the CPP-NPA terrorists who are still in the mountain ranges of Bukidnon, come down and yield to your Army. We are your true soldiers, we will help you return to mainstream society and be with your families.”
Illana’s pronouncements and the barangay councils’ resolutions came at a time when various groups cried foul over what they called as the red-tagging of religious leaders, lawyers, activists and a journalist and members of his family in northern Mindanao. Camp Evangelista has denied its was behind the distribution of flyers that red-tagged over a dozen people and groups in Cagayan de Oro.