Mati City, Davao Oriental – Ruperto C Cadungog was a great father to his seven children and a loving husband to his wife. He works hard as security personnel only to make both ends meet and provide a decent life for his family. But on Sunday, in front of his pleading relatives, he was killed for one reason that government authorities’ confirmed, he was a former commander of the rebel group New People’s Army who has returned to the fold of law for a new lease in life.
Cadungog, known by his former cohorts as Toper, was shot to death 7:45 p.m. at his own residence in Sitio Fairview, Brgy. Central, Mati City, Davao Oriental. Being witnessed by his relatives, this brutal execution sowed fear and, inevitably, trauma preventing them to cooperate and give details to police authorities. After the incident, his kin immediately rushed him to Camillus Hospital but was declared dead due to multiple gunshot wounds.
“This is a manifestation of the barbaric nature of the CPP/NPA as anti-peace and anti-development”, said Lt. Col. Lyndon Paniza, spokesperson of Army’s 10th Infantry Division who affirmed that NPA’s execution to former members were set to avert possible rebel returnees and may result to surrender feelers. He ensured though that security measures will be undertaken to prevent similar incident.
“As President Aquino forged the Peace Agreement yesterday between the GPH-MILF, the CPP, through its Organized Armed Group NPA, is continually sowing terror to peace loving citizens especially those of their comrades who decided to peacefully live a normal life”, Paniza said.
Last year, Cadungog surrendered to government troops and was living peacefully working as security staff at the City Engineers’ Office of Mati City who was accorded with said job by Mayor Michelle Rabat in order to aid him in support to his children who are all at school.
Now, his wife is unsure where to start the new life her husband had once tried to create for them. She has no idea how she will support her seven children who may no longer go back to school. She may be clueless of what will happen to them next, but one thing she is sure of, their dreams are now scattered because of his husbands’ once affiliation to notorious NPAs caused him his life.
Mayor Rabat, however, has pledged to continually support Cadungog family.
As Paniza have said, “NPAs are desperate because of its diminishing force that is why they now resort to threatening their own members and capitalizing recruiting minors.