By Bonita Ermac
Government troops of the Joint Task Force central on Thursday morning recovered a dummy Improvised Explosive Device (IED) along the Isulan-Cotabato Highway in Barangay Labulabu 2, Datu Hoffer Ampatuan, Maguindanao.
The suspected IED was found during a clearing operation conducted by a squad of the 57th Infantry Battalion led by Corporal Gapor Sansawi.
This was the second IED planted by the lawless elements in the province of Maguindanao in less than 48 hours following an explosion made of 40mm ammunition in a construction site at the public market in Barangay Poblacion, Datu Paglas yesterday evening.
Coordination was immediately conducted with the Army Explosive Ordnance Disposal Team (EODT) for the immediate disposal of the IED.
No casualty was reported and the highway operation was not hampered.
601st Brigade Commander Brigadier General Diosdado Carreon said that recently most of the IEDs recovered were dummies, which will not actually explode.
“Our assessment is that they have fewer explosives now due to the neutralization of most of their bomb makers and the bomb factory in the area”, Carreon said.
JTF Central Commander Brigadier general Cirilito E. Sobejana enjoined the public to remain alert, vigilant and resist all forms of terrorist acts or any similar activities perpetrated by those who wish to create chaos in the area”, he said.
The people of Maguindanao want to live a normal, peaceful and productive life similar to that enjoyed by the townsfolk of Datu Paglas during the last decade prior to the recent BIFF-instigated trouble.
“Our relentless campaign to defeat local terrorists and promote internal security in our joint area of operations continues to bear positive outcomes.
“I commend the troops of the Joint Task Force Central for a job well done,” said Lieutenant General Arnel B. Dela Vega, Commander of the Western Mindanao Command.