Tuesday, May 12, 2020

2 more NPA rebels yield in Sarangani

From the Philippine News Agency (May 12, 2020): 2 more NPA rebels yield in Sarangani (By Allen Estabillo)

Lt. Col. Ronaldo Valdez, commanding officer of the Army’s 73rd Infantry Battalion. (Photo courtesy of the 73IB) 

Two more disgruntled New People’s Army (NPA) rebels surrendered in Malapatan town, Sarangani province on Monday following negotiations with local leaders and government troops.

In a statement on Tuesday, Lt. Col. Ronaldo Valdez, Army’s 73rd Infantry Battalion commanding officer, said t
he rebels yielded voluntarily along with a high-powered firearm through assistance from community leaders in Barangay Sapu Masla, Malapatan.

He identified the returnees as aliases “Jobel” and “Lala,” both previously under the Platoon South of the NPA’s Guerilla Front 71 (Tala)-Far South Mindanao Region.
“Lala” surrendered an Elisco M653 rifle reportedly issued by the NPA unit.

Valdez said their latest accomplishment was an offshoot of the continuing implementation in the area of its community support program.

He said concerned community stakeholders, especially barangay leaders, facilitated the negotiations with the returnees.

He said the surrenderers admitted they were enticed to join the ranks of the communist terrorists after believing their propaganda that the military is abusive and cruel.

But he said they saw that it was contrary to the real situation, especially by the warm welcome received by the past returnees from the military.

In a statement, “Lala” said their former comrades were not beaten after they surrendered and now have better lives.

“It only proves that the communist terrorist organization is just exploiting and giving us false hopes,” he said.

“Jobel” said he saw the government’s sincerity in helping the poor, including his family, through various programs and projects.

Valdez added that they will process the inclusion of the returnees into the government’s Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program so they can also avail of financial and livelihood grants.


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