FORT MAGSAYSAY, Nueva Ecija — The 7th Infantry (KAUGNAY) Division, Philippine Army led by its Commander, Major General Andrew D. Costelo PA welcomed the surrender of three (3) members of the Communist Terrorist Group including a pregnant woman to the troops of 70th Infantry (MATAPAT AT MATATAG) Battalion Philippine Army, a few days before 2022.
Colonel Joseph Norwin D Pasamonte, Commander of 703rd Infantry (AGILA) Brigade, 7th Infantry KAUGNAY Division, Philippine Army presented the surrenderees to the local media in a Press Conference held on December 29, 2021, at Headquarters 7ID, Fort Ramon Magsaysay, Palayan City, Nueva Ecija.
He identified the surrenderees from Sandatahang Yunit Propaganda Platun, Lino Blas Command, KLG West as Ramer Gacola alias “Ivar/Darmo” – Commanding Officer, together with his pregnant wife, Julie Ann Castillo alias “Eva/Jai”, Medical Officer and another Lester Paulo Advincula alias “Jin”, CTG’s political guide.
“We are trying to achieve the mission of ending the local armed conflict before the end of President Duterte’s term. We, the Philippine Army, are always ready to embrace and assist the former rebels in choosing and pursuing a better and peaceful life in the mainstream society,” said Col Pasamonte during the Press Conference.
Assorted firearms were displayed and shown to the media as the product of the cooperation between the former rebels and the government.
Furthermore, the Brigade Commander assured that the said surrenderees will benefit from the government’s Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) including monetary and livelihood assistance as well as providing support for the couple’s official union and baby’s christening.
Meanwhile, MGen Costelo lauded the decision of the three (3) CTG personalities citing the decline of the enemy’s number of forces covered by the 70IB due to the intensive implementation of programs under the TF-ELCAC coupled with the Army’s Community Support Program.
“Natutuwa tayo dahil bago ang bagong taon, binigyan nila ang kanilang sarili ng pagkakataon na magsimula ulit. Narito ang kasundaluhan upang kayo ay alalalayan at sa ilalim ng E-CLIP kayo ay mabibigyan ng benepisyo. Nais namin kayong makasama sa ating sabay-sabay na pagtahak sa daan ng kapayapaan tungo sa maunlad na bayan,” added MGen Costelo.