Aug 6, 2020

Dumaran police chief escapes ambush, vehicle got 24 bullet holes and shrapnel hits

Carandang and his companion driver P/Cpl. Mark Russel Evangelista escaped unhurt following the ambush at around 6 a.m.

Dumaran MPS chief P/Cpt. Erwin Carandang stands beside the police mobile car at the Palawan Provincial Police Office (PPO).

 

The police car carrying Dumaran PNP chief P/Cpt. Erwin Carandang had at least 24 bullet holes and shrapnel hits on it when it arrived at the Provincial Police Office (PPO) in the city from a New People’s Army (NPA) ambush site in Taytay on Sunday.

Carandang and his companion driver P/Cpl. Mark Russel Evangelista escaped unhurt following the ambush at around 6 a.m.

The attack was later owned by the Bienvenido Vallever Command (BVC) of the NPA.

In an interview with Palawan News, Carandang said he was en route to Roxas in a police vehicle driven by his companion Evangelista when they were fired upon.

He said that when he heard an explosion followed by continuous gunfire, he commanded Evangelista to speed away as they were outnumbered and not in a position to fire back.

“Basta pagkarinig ko ng putok, sabog, sunod-sunod na putok ang sabi ko na sa driver paspasan na niya takbo niya dahil unang-una hindi kami puwedeng mag-return fire dahil dalawa lang kami at the same time hindi namin alam kung saan kami puputok pero ang putok ay galing sa taas talaga,” Carandang said.

 

The police car with bullet holes and shrapnel hits. // Image by Palawan News.

“Pababa kami kaya medyo matulin kaya pasalamat ako kasi kung paakyat kami binanatan baka meron kaming paglagyan,” he added.

The police mobile which had 24 bullet holes and shrapnel marks on the right side proceeded straight to the city.

Carandang said that before the incident, he had received information about a planned activity of the group.

“Meron na kaming natanggap na information na, kagaya kagabi meron akong natanggap na ga-graduate ‘yong Sparrow Unit ng CTG (communist terrorist group) na magco-conduct nga sila ng pag-dismiss doon,” he said.

Carandang said he believed the ambush was a random harassment activity of the NPA.

“Siguro mang-haharas lang sila. To whom it may concern talaga kung sino lang ang una nilang ma-target. Hindi naman talaga kami yong target nila, although may threat ‘yong Dumaran ang sabi papasukin nga at noong nakaraan nga may nakuha akong impormasyon doon sa parte ng Dumaran may mga bagong dating doon na ayon sa aking impormasyon ay may galing ng Mindoro na miyembro ng kabila,” he said.

 

P/Cpt. Erwin Carandang inspecting the police car at the PPO in Barangay Tiniguiban.

 

NPA claims responsibility

In a text message sent to Palawan News, the BVC of the NPA said they were targeting Carandang for alleged abuses.

“Inaako ng BVC NPA Palawan ang ambush sa isang sasakyan ng mga pulis sa bayan ng Roxas ngayong umaga. According to Ka Salvador Luminoso (NPA spokesperson) ay target po talaga si Captain Carandang dahil matagal na siyang inirereklamo at ang ilan pang pulis Dumaran ng pangongotong sa mga mangingisda. Naging possible ito dahil sa reliable info mula sa area of operations,” the BVC stated.

“Ang pamamarusang ito ay bilang pagpapaalala sa rehimeng US-Duterte at kay Jose Chaves Alvarez na mabibigo ang PTF-ELCAC (Provincial Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict). Ito rin ay bilang tugon sa hinaing ng mamamayang Palawenyo na parusahan ang mga pasistang ahente ng rehimen,” it added.

(With reports from Alex Baaco and Ruth Rodriguez)

 

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