Bukidnon – Five NPA Terrorists surrendered to Lieutenant Colonel Ronald Illana, Commander of 8th Infantry (DEPENDABLE) Battalion at Brgy Poblacion, Impasugong, Bukidnon, on Thursday, November 22, 2018.
The five combatant NPA terrorists also turned-in their firearms: alias LUCAS, 49 yrs old, resident of Loreto, Agusan del Sur, surrendered one (1) Cal. 30 M1 Garand rifle. Alias “GM”, 22 yrs old turned-in one (1) Cal. 22 rifle; alias PIGONG, 18 yrs old, one (1) Cal. 22 rifle; alias BOY, 25 yrs old, one (1) Cal. 22 rifle and alias COBRA, 24 yrs old, one (1) Cal. 9mm sub machine gun. The four are all from Cabanglasan, Bukidnon.
They revealed that continuous hardships, internal discrimination, and false promises from their leaders prompted them to lay down their arms and return to the folds of the law and live a normal and peaceful life with their families.
Lieutenant Colonel Illana, lauded the effort of the troops in reaching out to remote barangays and sitios to offer peace with the rebels.“Community Support Program opened the door for our misguided brothers to return to the mainstream.” said LTC Illana.
“Everyday, more and more NPA members are surfacing to avail of the government’s Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP). With the help of the Local Government Units, we have convinced more NPA members and supporters to denounce armed struggle and embrace peace. We are expecting more surrenderers in the coming days.” LTC Illana added.
Colonel Edgardo De Leon, Commander of the 403rd Infantry (PEACEMAKER) Brigade, cited the increasing number of surrendering NPA members. He attributed it to the effectiveness of peace dialogues at the community level as compared to the snail-paced national level peacetalks being insisted by the National Democratic Front.
“Sa pamamagitan ng direktang pakikipagpulong ng lokal na pamahalaan, kasama ang army, sa mga kamag-anak at kaibigan ng mga rebelde mas nagiging mabilis ang pagkakaunawaan. Kaya umaasa kami na mas marami pang rebelde ang magbabalik- loob lalo pa at malapit na ang pasko. Naniniwala kami na marami pang NPA ang gusto ng sumuko, pero tinatakot at pinipigilan ng kanilang mga lider. Naghihintay po ang army sa inyo at bukas ang aming pinto sa inyong pagbabagong buhay.” said Col De Leon.