The Kabankalan police has refused to release a copy of the spot report of an encounter between the Philippine Army and the New People’s Army that left six alleged rebels dead in Tabugon, Kabankalan City, on September 21 to the Commission on Human Rights (CHR),
CHR Negros Occidental head Vincent Parra said on Friday, October 6, said they were seeking a copy of the police report to validate the names of the victims that appeared in media reports as part of their investigation into the incident.
They were only able to validate the names after going to the funeral parlor where the dead were brought, he said.
Of the six killed only one was from Kabankalan City. He was identified as tricycle driver Ruben Gaytan, Parra said.
Parra said he went to the residence of Gaitan in Barangay Camansi, Kabankalan, and was told by his relatives that he was a regular employee of the Southern Negros Development Corp. in Kabankalan City who drove a tricycle as a sideline.
Gaitan’s relatives insisted that he was not a member of the NPA, the CHR investigator said.
The CHR also wrote to the Kabankalan PNP for a copy of the spot report but was denied a copy and referred to the Philippine Army, Parra said.
He did not know why the police would not furnish the CHR with its spot report on the encounter, which is a basic public record, Parra pointed out.
Parra said he spoke to Lt. Col. J-Jay Javines, 3rd Infantry Division Public Affairs Office chief, to inform him that he was sending a letter requesting information needed in the CHR investigation.
Javines assured that the Philippine Army would cooperate with the CHR, Parra added.*