Negrense soldier killed in Panay, rebel slain in Negros Oriental

The encounter site at Sitio Sug-ong, Brgy Milagrosa, Sta. Catalina, Negros Oriental*

A 61st Infantry Battalion soldier from Negros Occidental sacrificed his life defending the people of Tubungan, Iloilo, against members of the Communist Terrorist Group (CTG) on Wednesday, January 17, the Army’s 3rd Infantry (Spearhead) Division spokesman said Thursday.

PFC Rodelo Alfanza, 30, of Barangay Bato, Sagay City, Negros Occidental, sustained a gunshot wound on his neck following an encounter with about 15 members of the New People’s Army (NPA) under Nahum Camariosa, alias Bebong, in Brgy Igpaho, Tubungan, Lt. Col. J-Jay Javines, 3ID Public Affairs Office chief, said.

Alfanza was immediately transported to a hospital in Iloilo City, along with another wounded soldier, but was declared dead on arrival by the attending physician, he said.

Maj. Gen. Marion R Sison, 3ID commander, said “We are deeply saddened by the loss of PFC Alfanza. His death stands as tangible proof of our perseverance and commitment to ending the local communist armed conflict in Western and Central Visayas”.

“Alfanza’s passing will not weaken our resolve to finish our fight against CTG, instead, it will ignite fervor in our hearts and minds, motivating us to strive harder in the pursuit of genuine and lasting peace. His ultimate sacrifice will always be remembered as an act of courage and dedication, not only in the region but in the entire nation,” Sison said.

Meanwhile, an NPA rebel was killed when 11th Infantry Battalion soldiers encountered about nine rebels at Sitio Sug-ong, Brgy Milagrosa, Sta Catalina, Negros Oriental, 6 a.m. on Thursday, January 18.

Seized from the encounter site were a M-16 rifle, three AK47 magazines, M203 ammunition, and backpacks containing personal belongings of the rebels.

Brig. Gen. Joey A. Escanillas, 302nd Infantry (Achiever) Brigade commander, said “The success of this operations is a testament to the skill and bravery of our forces. We remain vigilant and resolute in our mission to protect the community from any potential harm”.

“We urge the residents to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activities to local authorities, reinforcing the importance of community cooperation in maintaining peace and order,” he added.*

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