Suspected NPA commander arrested in Davao City

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/09 May) — An alleged leader of the New People’s Army (NPA) operating at the boundary of Bukidnon, Davao Davao del Norte, and North Cotabato was arrested in Davao City on Sunday evening, a military official said Monday.

In a press conference Monday at the Philippine Information Agency XI, Major General Rafael C. Valencia, commander of the 10th Infantry Division, identified the suspect as Arnulfo Mantes.

Mantes, alleged secretary of the NPA Southern Regional Command, was arrested at 7:40 p.m. on Sunday at his residence in Purok 1-B, Brgy. 76-A, this city.

He has an outstanding warrant of arrest for murder issued by the Regional Trial Court 10 and robbery with violence against/or intimidation of persons by the RTC 12 in Kidapawan City in North Cotabato, according to Valencia.

Despite the arrest, Valencia described the conduct of elections here as “generally peaceful so far” as he assured that military units have been dispatched across region to secure the roads and ensure the safety of the Boards of Election Inspectors.

So far, the military has not received reports of threats but it was closely monitoring Paquibato and Marilog Districts here, he said.

On Sunday, Davao City’s Public Safety and Security Command Center (PSSCC) will strengthen its monitoring efforts to thwart possible threats on election day.

Sharon Maghinay, PSSCC assistant administrator said in an interview they will have four teams each for its Traffic Operations Center, Intelligent Operations Center, and call center which will receive calls or reports from residents..

But she clarified the city police will be the one to respond to incidents that may reach their office. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)