CEBU CITY, PHILIPPINES- Two were killed after suspected members of the Special Partisan Unit (SPARU) of the leftist New Peoples Army (NPA) shot them outside a cockpit in Zamboanguita town, Negros Oriental.

The fatalities, Weny Alegre, 37 and Felimino Jalayan just got out of the Gallera de Zamboanguita in Barangay (village) Poblacion past 4pm yesterday, July 24, when the armed men waylaid them and shouted, “MABUHAY ANG NPA” afterwards.

Reports reaching the Police Regional Office (PRO7) headquarters said four gunmen that arrived in two motorcycle scooters who wore ball caps and face masks shot on the victims who were riding also in separate motorcycles.

The assailants then fled the area after the incident that followed the ambush of four policemen in Ayungon last week, an another town in Negros Oriental province. Police suspected that the SPARU-NPA liquidated Alegre in retaliation of his return to the folds of the law as Alegre who now works as forest guard for the government used to be NPA member himself.

The second victim is meanwhile the president of the United Calango Farmers Assogiation, a local farmers group that supports the government. Just last July 18 four cops; Corporal Relebert Beronio, Patrolman Raffy Callo, Patrolman Roel Cabellon and Patrolman Marquino de Leon, all members of the 704th Mobile Force Company of the Regional Mobile Force Batallion (RMFB7) were gunned down by the NPA’s also in Ayungon town.

The initial report said that the slain cops were ambushed as they were riding on two motorcycles in Sitio Yamot, Brgy. Mabato, Ayungon but Regional Police Director Brig. Gen. Debold Sinas clarified that the cops were actually executed right in front of the barangay hall in full view of the residents as they were overpowered by the large number of NPA’s that suddenly arrived in the house of a local resident where the police went.

As per police and military intelligence sources, the Leonardo Panaligan Command of the NPA is operating in Negros Oriental./AAJ