NPA acknowledges POW Ongachen’s apology, readies his release from custody

The Regional Operations Command of the New People’s Army in Southern Mindanao has acknowledged the admission of guilt and subsequent public apology of Prisoner of War Police Chief Inspector Arnold S. Ongachen, badge no. 018629. He has admitted to having made an error of judgment by keeping in his possession a sachet of shabu which they took from a “test buy” operation. He has also apologized to the masses, the government of Pres. Rodrigo Duterte and the CPP-NPA-NDF.

[Read POW Ongachen video message: NPA rehabilitates drug users]

His custodial unit has reported that preparations are underway for his safe and orderly release. Following the declaration of the unilateral ceasefire of the Central Committee of the CPP and the National Operations Command of the NPA and the reciprocation of the GPH of its own ceasefire, the custodial unit is nevertheless ready for any untoward event that may endanger POW Ongachen and the Red army’s safety.

POW Ongachen was arrested during the successful raid of the Gov. Generoso Municipal Police Station on May 29.

During his custody, POW Ongachen has declared willingness to support the NPA’s campaign against the prevalent drug trade in Gov. Generoso and Davao Oriental province. He was likewise given political education and has seen first hand how the NPA conducts its rehabilitation of drug users. He has spoken well of the masses’ support to the Red army and the people’s war and appealed to his principal, Pres. Duterte, to pursue the negotiations that will discuss the roots of the civil war.

The pending release of POW Ongachen along with another prisoner of war Michael B. Grande are a gesture of goodwill on the part of the revolutionary movement and optimism for the resumption of the peace negotiations.

While we deem the recent release of the NDFP consultants a positive development, the remaining political prisoners all over the country should be released immediately and without condition by the Duterte government in compliance with the CARHRIHL. These Red fighters, activists and civilians who were incarcerated on the ridiculous weight of trumped-up charges have suffered enough injustice under the fascist Arroyo and Aquino III regimes.

Below is the complete transcript of POW Ongachen’s public apology:

Magandang hapon po. Humihingipoako ng tawad sa masang Pilipino lalong-lalo na kay Pres. Rodrigo RoaDuterte, sa PNP organization at sa CPP-NPA-NDF sa pagkakamaliko pong paghawak ng isang sachet ng shabu na nakuha naming sa test buy nahindiakodapatanghahawaknito.

Sa dahilan pong tiwalang-tiwalapo ako sa sarili ko na hindi ko po ito gagamitin dahil hindi po ako user. At ito po ang naging dahilan kung bakit tumagal ng ganito ang pag-kustodiya sa akin. Inuulit kopo, hindi po ako user, hindi po ako pusher at lalong-lalo na po hindi po ako protektor ng droga. Sana po mapatawad po ninyo po ako. Maraming salamat po.

Good afternoon. I am apologizing to the Filipino people, especially to Pres. Rodrigo RoaDuterte, to the PNP organization and to the CPP-NPA-NDF for the mistake I have committed of keeping in my possession a sachet of shabu that we took during a test buy. I should not have been the one who kept it.

This was because I am confident that I will not use it because I am not a drug user. And this is the reason why my custody took a long time. I am reiterating that I am not a user, I am not a pusher and, most especially, I am not a protector of the drug trade. I hope you will all forgive me. Thank you very much.