In highest honor of Ka Parts Bagani

The Regional Operations Command of the New People’s Army in Southern Mindanao confers its highest revolutionary tribute to Jhon Niebres Peñaranda, Ka Parts Bagani to comrades, the masses and revolutionary allies, who was executed Tokhang-style by fascist state forces of the US-Duterte regime last August 16 in Brgy. Cannery Site, Polomolok, South Cotabato.

Ka Parts had no means to defend himself when fully-armed members of the province’s Philippine National Police and soldiers of the AFP’s 5th Special Forces Battalion swooped in and executed him. He turned 54 last August 5.

We share the entire revolutionary forces’ profound grief over the Ka Parts’ death. Red commanders and fighters in different NPA units hold their rifles while peasant and Lumad masses raise their fists high in revolutionary salute to a beloved comrade who has dedicated more than 30 years of his life and art in the countryside and in the revolutionary armed struggle. We extend our deepest and heartfelt condolences to Ka Parts’ family and friends.

More than grief, the revolutionary forces are overcome with outrage at the murder of Ka Parts. Initial reports say that Ka Parts’ sustained six wounds in different parts of his body, one of them from a bullet that went through his nape. The banal and worn-out story being peddled by the enemy that they engaged Ka Parts in a heavy shootout was belied by the fact that the only bullets that could be had in the scene were those that fatally pierced the defenseless comrade. Without a doubt and yet again, an unarmed comrade was summarily killed by Duterte’s armed minions, in wanton violation of basic human rights and all international rules of engagement.

Ka Parts’ death is a loss not only to the national democratic movement but to the Philippine art community as well. His body of work throughout the years had been hailed and propagated, used over and over by activists and academics in educational discussions, and celebrated as an exceptional exemplar of revolutionary art in a series of well-received exhibitions in October and November 2007.

But more than anything else, perhaps even more than being an accomplished artist, Ka Parts was first and foremost a military cadre of the New People’s Army. He helped plan and execute several successful tactical offensives. He created excellent maps, sandboxes and materials for war games during preparations for these military actions. He was an excellent instructor during politico-military trainings of Red fighters and gave incisive assessments during military conferences of the regional operations command.

Ka Parts cherished the people’s army deeply and would always insist that if he were not in the NPA and in the countryside, his inspiration for his art would dry up. His unassuming and humble nature had been tempered in the communist spirit of self-remoulding, the realities of guerilla life and consistent integration with the peasant and Lumad masses.

Ka Parts’ selfless service of more than three decades in the countryside, while testament to his devotion to the revolutionary armed struggle and the peasants and Lumad of Mindanao, had comprehensively honed and sharpened his craft. His life and art is proof that beyond talent, beyond commercial or personal success, an artist can only find and etch his place in the world if he or she shares the dreams, pain and struggles of the toiling masses.

We pay highest tribute to Comrade Parts Bagani, communist, Red fighter and revolutionary cultural worker, whose enduring artistry will inspire and mobilize thousands upon thousands more to the path of the national democratic revolution.

In highest honor of Ka Parts Bagani