TAFT, Eastern Samar-Contrary to the claims of the Communist Party of the Philippines(CPP), the Tiamzon couple were not tortured but died due to an ambush incident.
Thus said Major General Camilo Ligayon, the commanding general of the 8th Infantry Division, in an interview Friday (April 22) while he was attending the groundbreaking of a solar power farm here.
He reminded the CPP that when Benito Tiamzon and his wife, Wilma, were earlier arrested and detained by government forces, they were treated well.
“That is their claim. There was an encounter. When they were imprisoned, they were treated well. This shows that we observe human rights,” Ligayon said.
This is despite the fact that the Tiamzon couple were considered as “terrorists and fugitives who were facing 15 murder cases,” he added.
Earlier, the CPP claimed that the high-ranking CPP leaders were brutally tortured and did not die due to a boat explosion as reported by the military in Eastern Visayas.
On August 22 of last year, government troops encountered a group of armed persons who were on board a motorized boat traversing the waters of Buri Island, Catbalogan.
Aside from the exchange of fire, an explosion hit the motorized boat.
At least eight human remains were later recovered by government troops, one was that of a woman.
Asked why it took the CPP to confirm the deaths of the Tiamzon couple, Ligayo said that its part of the propaganda of the communist group to make them heroes.
“They want to treat them as heroes. But they will never be heroes. They were responsible not only for killing our soldiers but civilians and even children,” Ligayo said.
“Marami silang sinira na buhay for the past 52 years,” he added.
Ligayo said that with the confirmed deaths of the Tiamzon couple, they are now more confident that the insurgency problem not only in Eastern Visayas but the rest of the country will come to its end.
He then urged the remaining active members of the communist group to surrender and return to the folds of the law.
“It’s time for them to return to the mainstream of our society,” Ligayo said.
(JOEY A. GABIETA/ROEL T. AMAZONA)