MANILA, Philippines - Several police officers including the head of the Quezon City Police District's Station 2 were injured after being attacked by militants who entered the National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC) on Thursday.
An estimated 100 militants stormed the NAPC on Thursday morning to demand that the coconut levy fund be immediately distributed to genuine small coconut farmers. The commission's office is located inside the Department of Agriculture building.
Superintendent Pedro Sanchez, chief-of-police of Quezon City Police District's Station 2, was injured during the clash between police and the militants.
"May sugat sa kaliwang pisngi matapos hampasin ng stick na kinakabitan ng banderitas ng mga militante," reported dzMM's Johnson Manabat.
Other police officers were also hurt in the incident.
DZMM reported that the demonstrators belonging to the group Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas were on board five passenger jeepneys. They arrived before 10 a.m. and parked beside the gate of the DA where they held a short program.
However, some militants managed to enter the compound by climbing on top of the jeepney's roof and then over the DA's gate. Once inside, they destroyed the gate's padlock to let other members of the group inside the compound.
Clashes between the militants and police ensued after protesters failed to have a dialogue with NAPC secretary Joel Rocamora, who also heads the Presidential Task Force on Coconut Levy.
Tensions further escalated when militants noticed that one policeman was carrying a long firearm.
The militants said they will only leave the compound once they have a dialogue with Rocamora. - with dzMM and ANC