Paeng is a pain: Lorenzana, Año, Sara Duterte accuse Mariano of involvement in Lapanday attack

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A Davao-based council which includes Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Armed Forces Chief of Staff Eduardo Año, and Mayor Sara Duterte have asked the Commission on Appointments to reject the appointment of former militant lawmaker Rafael Mariano to the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR).

The Davao Regional Development Council and Regional Peace and Order Council (RDC-RPOC X!) sent a letter to Senate President Koko Pimentel last month informing the CA of Mariano’s involvement in the New People’s Army’s attacked the Lorenzo family and their Lapanday properties in Davao City and Davao del Norte last April 29.

RDC-RPOC XI also moved to eject Mariano from the government panel in the ongoing peace talks with the communist group led by the National Democratic Front (NDF). Mariano is the government consultant on Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms (CASER).

Mariano was singled out among government officials involved in the Lapanday attack, which resulted to the death of one civilian and P2 billion in damages.

The RDC-RPOC XI claimed that these attacks were meant to terrorize Lapanday and its owners, the Loenzo family, for their refusal to pay extortion money to the NPA. Lapanday is currently in dispute with an Agrarian Reform Beneficiary cooperative in Tagum City, Davao del Norte.

“Based on intelligence reports, officials of the national government have been linked to the Lapanday incidents It was in fact suggested that the GRP Peace Panel recommend to the Office of the President to exclude these officials, particularly the Secretary of the Department of Agrarian Reform, from representing the government in the peace panel as they are are reported to have direct participation in the planning of the Lapanday incidents, thus, have betrayed the trust of the Office of the President,” the RDC-RPOC-XI said in its resolution.

Aside from the president’s daughter, Lorenzana and Año, the signatories of the RDC-RPOC Xi resolution were Davao del Norte Anthony del Rosario, Davao Occidental Governor Claude Bautista, Davao Oriental Governor Nelson Dayanghirang, Tagum City Mayor Allan L. Rellon, 10th Infantry commander MGen Rafael Valencia and Eastern Mindanao commander LTGen Rey Leonardo B. Guerrero.

Mariano’s appointment remains hanging after the CA bypassed twice his nomination.