PNP claims slain Negros farmers' org is Red legal front

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 23 2018 08:57 AM | Updated as of Sep 16 2019 01:09 PM

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MANILA - The National Federation of Sugar Workers, whose 9 members were massacred in Negros Occidental, is a legal front of communist rebels, The chief of the Philippine National Police said Tuesday. 

Speaking to radio DZMM, PNP chief Director General Oscar Albayalde said the NFSW is used by the Communist Party of the Philippines to take over private lands for profit.

The massacre victims, he said, only became members of the NFSW on Saturday morning. They were not legitimate tillers or tenants of the hacienda. 

"Isa pa pong kadahilanan iyan bakit nagalit iyung talaga mga lehitimong tillers doon," he said in a DZMM interview. 

(That is one reason why the legitimate owners there were angry at them.) 

The fatalities allegedly occupied a private land in Hacienda Nene on Saturday night. They were eating dinner inside tents when they were shot by 5 to 6 gunmen, initial reports said. 

Albayalde clarified that the PNP has yet to identify a person of interest in the killing. 

This is contrary to Sagay police chief C/Insp. Roberto Mansueto's earlier statement that a former farmer is being eyed as a person of interest. 

Neighbors and 2 minors who survived the incident identified the person of interest and gave description for 4 of the gunmen, Mansueto told radio DZMM on Monday. 
 
The provincial and town government are offering a reward of P500,000 for information that would help solve the massacre.