COTABATO CITY – Suspected rebels bombed a power pylon in North Cotabato’s Aleosan town in the restive southern Philippine region of Mindanao, authorities said on Wednesday.
It said the attack occurred late Tuesday and targeted one of the pylons – Tower 68 – of the privately-owned National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) in the village of Pagangan. The same tower was also bombed in December 2015.
Although no individual or group claimed responsibility for the bombings, the military and police blamed rebels extorting money as the sole motive for the attacks. Previous bombings of NGCP pylons had cut off electricity in many areas of the region.
Rebels used mortar rounds in blasting pylons. The army previously said that each tower is manned by a caretaker who is employed by NGCP. There caretakers are responsible for looking after the towers and reporting presence of threat in the area.
Many landowners have been complaining about NGCP towers inside their domain which affected their livelihood.
Moro Islamic Liberation Front rebels and other armed groups are actively operating in the region where the NGCP put up dozens of steel pylons to provide power to the grids. (With a report from Rhoderick Beñez)
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