The Cagayan De Oro-based 4th Infantry Division is now conducting pursuit operations against the New People’s Army (NPA) band who shot and killed a tribal leader in Agusan Del Norte Wednesday afternoon. 4th Infantry Division commander Major Gen. Oscar Lactao condemned this latest atrocity by the rebels against the Indigenous People.
The victim was identified as Datu Ricardo M. Sualhayan, 37, married, a tribal leader of the Higaonon Tribe and residing in Sitio Mimbahandi, Barangay Camagong, Nasipit of the said locality.
He was headed for home aboard his motorcycle when shot dead by the rebels, allegedly affiliated with Guerilla Front 4A of the North Central Mindanao Regional Committee, at 1:30 p.m.
Sualhayan sustained gunshot wounds in the forehead and shoulders resulting in his immediate death. This took place at Kilometer 8, Sitio Balaatan, Barangay Camagong.
Lactao said the victim was one of the tribal leaders desirous of peace and strongly opposed to NPA influence. “We strongly condemn this spate of unwarranted killings perpetrated by the NPA. This will create another cycle of violence in the area. There is a need to put an end to all of this,” he added.