Soldier tagged in slay of Parago’s daughter killed

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/10 November) — A former military intelligence officer implicated in the killing of the daughter of a New People’s Army commander was gunned down by two suspected rebels around 6:00 a.m. yesterday in Barangay Malabog, Paquibato District, this city.

Cpl. Winnie Carampatan, a member of 72nd Infantry Battalion in Mawab, Compostela Valley was sending his two children and a nephew to school when the attack happened, said Maj. Jacob Thaddeus Obligado, commanding officer of the 10th Civil-Military Operations Battalion.

The NPA’s Merardo Arce Command accused Carampatan and 12 other soldiers in the abduction and murder of Rebelyn Pitao, a school teacher and daughter of rebel leader Leoncio Pitao a.k.a. Kumander Parago. Her body bore torture marks and was dumped in an irrigation canal in Carmen town in Davao del Norte on March 5, 2009.

Obligado said that Carampatan, a former intelligence operative, was off-duty at the time of the incident.

PO3 Rosevie Cabuedas, investigator at the Paquibato police precinct said the two men flagged the victim down and shot him at close range but the kids were left unharmed.

The two men then escaped on board a motorcycle driven by another man.

Lt. Col. Lyndon Paniza, spokesperson of the 10th Infantry Division deplored Carampatan’s death, calling it an act of treachery by the NPA.

“Our soldier was non-combatant during the incident. Worst, he was killed before the members of his family who were traumatized by the incident,” Paniza said.

He called the act a violation of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CAHRIHL) signed between the government and the National Democratic Front in 1992.

On several occasions, the NDF had also accused the military of violating the agreement, the first to be signed by the government and the NDF in the course of their on-and-off peace talks.

Aside from Carampatan, the NPA also accused 12 other military officials and members of the Military Intelligence Battalion of the 10th Infantry Division.

The Military Intelligence Battalion was dissolved after some of its members were implicated in the death of Rebelyn. (MindaNews)