New People’s Army Regional Command
June 29, 2015
The Southern Mindanao Regional Command of the New People’s Army and the entire revolutionary forces express their deepest most profound salute to a great leader and warrior, Ka Parago or Leoncio Pitao who was killed in a raid together with guerrilla medic Ka Kyle on June 28, 2015 at 2:30 pm in Barangay Panalum, Paquibato district, Davao City. Ka Parago was being treated for his diabetes, hyperthyroidism and hepatitis when the raiding team composed of the 6th Scout Ranger Company, 2nd Scout Ranger Battalion under the 1st Scout Ranger Regiment peppered him with bullets. Ka Kyle or Vanessa Limpag who was nursing Ka Parago had already raised her arms, shouting that she was a medic, when she too was razed to the ground by the military. She died instantly. The Philippine Army must be very proud and happy to have killed a very sick man and an unarmed medic.
They have no regard at all for the rules of engagement under the protocols of war as specified in the Geneva Convention and the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law. They kill with impunity. Ka Parago had served the national democratic revolution for close to 37 years. He spent the greater part of his adult life serving the people, in unstinting dedication to the cause of national democracy. As a Red commander, he led and trained so many young warriors in the art of guerrilla warfare. From the countless disarming operations in the 1980s and 1990s to the capture of General Obillo and Capt. Montealto in 1999 to the raid of Davao Penal Colony and the countless tactical offensives mounted by the Pulang Bagani Company. Ka Parago remained strong and vigilant under no less than five reactionary regimes, from the Marcos dictatorship to the current US-Aquino regime.
When he was detained in 1999 and the enemy offered him so much “reward money,” he never turned his back to the people and the revolution. He remained stalwart in his convictions and ever faithful to the communist spirit of defending the security of the revolutionary forces and the interest of the people. Even when he was grieving and agonizing over the tragic death of his daughter Rebelyn who was raped and killed by military intelligence operatives in 2009, Ka Parago exercised political wisdom. The people in Southern Mindanao remember him as their most beloved son who was always at their side, ready to help them solve their problems- -so unlike the AFP generals who do nothing but attack and burden the people.
He lived very simply. He was the exact opposite of the corrupt generals of the AFP. Ka Parago’s spartan life became an enduring example for every revolutionary who knew him or worked with him. As a matter of fact, for many years since the onset of his illness, he declined the Party’s offer of a sick leave. All he wanted to his last dying breath was to live with the masses and to serve them.
Long live the revolution! Long live the masses! These were the last defiant words uttered by Ka Parago—words that reverberate throughout the entire archipelago. Truly he lives in the hearts of the people as we honor his death. Thousands of young revolutionaries who have been inspired by this great guerrilla warrior now follow in his footsteps. The masses and the comrades grieve his death, yes, but they turn his grief to greater revolutionary fervor as the people’s war goes on. (sgd.)
Rigoberto F. Sanchez
Southern Mindanao Regional Command
New People’s Army