From the Philippine Information Agency (Dec 29): 50 ex-rebels vow to support gov’t, receive E-CLIP aid
403rd Brigade Commander Col. Edgardo Y. De Leon talks on how the government’s Enhanced Local Integration Program (E-CLIP), through the inter-agency Task Force Balik-Loob, works for those CPP-NPA and Militia ng Bayan who surrendered. (RLRB/PIA Bukidnon)
MALAYBALAY CITY, Bukidnon—Fifty former rebels of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) pledged to support the government by taking the oath of allegiance before governor Jose Maria R. Zubiri Jr. here, Wednesday, December 19.
In a simple rite, the surrendered CPP-NPA regulars and Militia ng Bayan—with 24 years old as the youngest and 63, the eldest—received a total of 2.08 million pesos as financial aid from the government’s Enhanced Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) ranging from P15,000 to P65,000 awarded by Defense Undersecretary Reynaldo B. Mapagu.
Ex-rebels turn over firearms where they will receive hefty sum as remuneration varying from P2,000 per unit (for low-powered guns) to as high as P279,000 (for heavy machine gun) depending on the condition and caliber of surrendered weapons. (PIA Bukidnon)
Col. Edgardo Y. De Leon, 403rd Brigade Commander said the ex-rebels also turned over firearms where they will receive hefty sum as remuneration varying from P2,000 per unit (for low-powered guns) to as high as P279,000 (for heavy machine gun) depending on the condition and caliber of surrendered weapons.
Composed of 3 females and 47 males led by top rebel leader and CPP-NPA political instructor alias “Ka Monica,” the ex-rebels revealed their struggles in the mountains.
In an interview, ‘Ka Monica’ bared her frustrations on CPP-NPA’s deceptions and exploitation of economic and social discrimination issues after serving as Political Instructor of Front 4B operating in Misamis Oriental; Front 88 in Agusan Sur; Front 89 in Pantaron Range; and Front 68 in Kitanglad area.
“After 20 years of leading a nomadic life, finally, I decided to pack up and leave because I realized that I will be stuck in a foxhole at war for life. I will be raising unschooled children. It really is a wasted opportunity for me and my comrades to have joined the organization when we could do better here with the government’s assistance, like this E-CLIP,” she said.
Usec Mapagu, who also chairs the government’s Task Force ‘Balik-Loob’ explained that the E-CLIP offers livelihood assistance and a reintegration package that includes capacity development training, educational assistance, and health services, among other benefits.
The E-CLIP Committee of Bukidnon led by Gov. Jose Ma. R. Zubiri Jr, together with Col. Edgardo De Leon, Commander of the 403rd Infantry "Peacemaker" Brigade; Richard D. Macas, Provincial IP Mandatory Representative; PNP provincial director Benedicto T. Pintor; and the representatives from DILG and Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office, facilitated the giving of E-CLIP assistance.
In a speech, Major General Ronald C. Villanueva, 4th Infantry Division commander, urged the 50 ex-rebels to convince their comrades still in the hinterlands to surrender because the E-CLIP ends December 31, 2019.
“After that, very bad things can happen anytime to those rebels still in the mountains,” he said.
He also calls for the nation’s more than a hundred million people to unite and support the government’s peace and development efforts.