Ka Parago’s Sister Punished for Blood Debts Incurred as AFP Intelligence Agent

Jun. 14, 2009

The Merardo Arce Command-Southern Mindanao Regional Operations Command of the New People’s Army (NPA) claims responsibility for the killing of Evelyn Pitao in Sto. Tomas, Davao del Norte. Guerrilla operatives of the Ka Paking Guimbaolibot Red Partisan Brigade (KPGRPB) of the NPA implemented the capital punishment on the basis of the decision reached by the revolutionary people’s court on February 2009.

The Southern Mindanao Regional Party Committee of the Communist Party of the Philippines reviewed and upheld the decision of the People’s Court and consequently approved the inclusion of Evelyn Pitao in the NPA’s regional standing order. This after an extensive and meticulous investigation has established without any tinge of doubt her direct and clear complicity in three state-instigated political crimes against the people and the revolutionary movement. These are the following:

1. The killing of her brother Danilo Pitao in Barangay Mankilam Tagum City on June 2008;
2. The arrest of her former husband, Ka Emong in Panabo City on January 2009;
3. The arrest of her brother, Ka Parago in Davao City on November 1999.

Evelyn Pitao’s involvement in military intelligence operations started in 1998 when the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) hatched a national plan to capture her brother, Ka Parago. During the raid by regional elements of the Military Intelligence Group (MIG ) group commander Col. Palabrica on the residence of Ka Parago’s family in November 1999, Evelyn Pitao and her live-in partner at that time relayed accurate information on the exact whereabouts of her brother. This resulted in the capture of Ka Parago. Her then live-in partner, a former NPA guerrilla turned MIG asset, was killed in 2001 for various crimes.

The NPA conducted an investigation to determine the extent of Evelyn Pitao’s cooperation with the enemy but later decided to put on hold the proceedings due to circumstantial limitations prevailing during that time.

The MIG-AFP was able to re-establish connection with Evelyn Pitao sometime in 2006. She was directly recruited first as an intelligence asset and later as an intelligence agent whose principal task was to provide information pertinent to two case operational plans targetting her brother Ka Parago and former husband, Ka Emong.

In the ensuing intelligence operations in 2007-2008, Evelyn Pitao pinpointed the whereabouts of her brother Danilo whom the MIG-AFP targetted for surveillance on the premise that being a sibling, he was in constant touch with Ka Parago. After failing to extract valuable information from Danilo who in the first place had no links with the revolutionary movement other than being Ka Parago’s younger brother, the Military Intelligence Battalion (MIB) of the 10th Infantry Division-Eastern Mindanao Command-AFP murdered Danilo Pitao on June 2008 in Tagum City.

In the performance of vital intelligence task in the covert operations versus Ka Parago and Ka Emong, Evelyn Pitao again provided accurate information to MIG XI and MIB-10th ID-AFP which led to the abduction of Ka Emong on January 2009 while he was on a medical leave and staying at the house of their eldest daughter in Panabo City.

After Ka Emong’s abduction by 10th ID-AFP intelligence operatives, the Merardo Arce Command resumed its investigation on the case of Evelyn Pitao on the basis of a complaint lodged before a local organ of revolutionary political power in Davao del Norte. After a prima facie case was extablished, an order of her arrest together with several others involved in the killing of Danilo and the capture of Ka Emong and Ka Parago was issued on February 2009. They were eventually tried in absentia by the People’s Court where Evelyn Pitao together with several others were found guilty beyond reasonable doubt for the murder of Danilo Pitao, the abduction and torture of Ka Emong and the arrest of Ka Parago. Evelyn Pitao was one of those meted the penalty of death.

The operations of the KPGRPB-NPA to implement the decision of the People’s Court after the same was upheld by the Regional Party Committee in February was underway when the abduction, rape, torture and killing of Rebelyn Pitao happened.

Although certain of the scenario that the propaganda mill of the AFP-PNP will try to twist the facts, muddle the issue and employ sickening schemes which it does regularly as a matter of tactic in its dirty counter-revolutionary war, the revolutionary forces never hesitate to serve the ends of revolutionary justice. The killing of Danilo Pitao and the capture of Ka Emong and Ka Parago constitute grave crimes versus the people and the armed revolutionary movement and those proven to have the highest degree of culpability rightly deserve the death penalty whoever they may be. And as a testament of the seriousness and revolutionary will of the NPA to achieve revolutionary justice in these instant cases, Evelyn Pitao and few others were punished.

We take this occasion to expose that as a matter of fact, the AFP has long utilized all possible foul means in its military intelligence operations versus the revolutionary forces. One such dirty tactic is directed against family members and close relatives of revolutionaries who are targetted by the AFP. Under pain of sustained harassment and increasing threats as well as of arbitrary arrests, forcible abductions, involuntary disappearances and killings, family members and close relatives of revolutionaries are being pressured to work as intelligence assets and agents of the AFP. Many have fallen victims while out of the few who have succumb, some later willfully performed intelligence duties with the enemy. Evelyn Pitao was one such case.

However, in all sincerity and self-criticism, we admit that a tactical operational error with serious, albeit, unintentional consequence was committed in the course of implementing the penalty on Evelyn Pitao. The fatal shooting of her live-in partner Roberto Dadula should have not been resorted to since he was not a target nor did his resistance take place in an armed manner and thus, posed no threat to the NPA team. Appropriate measures are being undertaken to continuously address this distressing concern and implement the NPA rules on the matter in accordance with the international humanitarian law.

For reference:

Rigoberto Sanchez
Merardo Arce Command
Southern Mindanao Regional Operations Command
New People’s Army

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