Friday, October 16, 2015

Army to focus on Compostela Valley

From the Philippine Information Agency (Oct 15): Army to focus on Compostela Valley

The Philippine Army (PA) is putting its focus on Compostela Valley  which now ranks number one among the provinces with insurgency problem.

Army chief, Major General Eduardo Año recently made assurance that the Philippine Army will pour its resources and will assign its best officers to address the persisting insurgency problem in the area.

Sa buong Pilipinas, ang Comval ang (in the entire country Comval is the) number one affected ng  (by) insurgency. This has the highest number of fronts,” he said in an interview with the media during the recently held National Serbisyo Caravan conducted at Sitio Mambusao in Barangay Ngan in the Municipality of Compostela, Compostela Valley.

Sisiguruhin natin  na ang resources ng Philippine Army  at magagaling na commanders dito matatalaga sa Compostela Valley para siguraduhin na ang mga opisyal natin ay committed na tapusin talaga ang ating kampanya  laban sa CPP NPA (Communist Party of the Philippines New People’s Army) dito sa Compostela Valley,” he further said. (We'll make sure that the resources of the Philippine Army and the best commanders will be assigned here in Compostela Valley so that we will make sure that our officials are committed in finishing the campaign against the CPP-NPA).

He estimated the strength of NPAs in Compostela Valley  at about 300 to 400.

Meanwhile, Año counted the delivery of government services especially to far-flung areas of Compostela Valley among the strategic plans to address the insurgency problem in the area.

He also had plans to pursue the armed rebel groups which, he said, usually stages “atrocities”. Citing this, he wanted to assign choice armed forces and commanders in Compostela Valley.

However, he cited the Comprehensive Local Integration Program (CLIP)  as an option to take, for those with the rebel groups.

“Kasi di na uso ang armadong pakikibaka. Kaya dapat malalaman nila na may programa ang gobyerno.  (Armed rebel is no longer the trend. So they should know the program of the government.),” he said.

CLIP is a program under  the Office of the Presidential Assistant on the Peace Process (OPAPP)  implemented in coordination with the local government units, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

Along with the support of all stakeholders including those at the grassroots level, Año also considered as a strategic  the move to converge government programs and services to better address insurgency problems.

On the other hand, he viewed the Peace and Development Outreach Program (PDOP) as important component of the Army’s pursuit against the New People’s Army (NPA). 

With PDOP, people in distant communities are made to understand on some issues hurled against the government, he said.  This would in a way help stop the recruitment, he  added.

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