Saturday, April 3, 2021

WESTMINCOM: 3 combatants yield in time with NPA anniversary

Posted to the Western Mindanao Command (WESTMINCOM) Facebook Page (Apr 3, 2021): 3 combatants yield in time with NPA anniversary

BUENAVISTA, Agusan del Norte – In time with the 52nd anniversary of the Communist New People’s Army (NPA) Terrorist (CNT) on Monday, March 29, 2021, three (3) of the group’s regular members surrendered to Maj. Gen. Greg T. Almerol, the commander of the Eastern Mindanao Command during his visit to the 402nd Infantry (Stingers) Brigade in Bancasi, Butuan City on Monday, March 29.

The three (3) CNT members were identified as alias Brake/Dante, 20 years old, Team Leader of Squad Uno, SDG CAOCAO, and alias Nike/Max, 17 years old, a member of Squad Uno, SDG CAOCAO, and both residents of Barangay Ibuan, Las Nieves together with alias Andy/Many 26 years old, a member Squad Uno, SRSDG SAGAY, GF4A, NCMRC and a resident of Barangay Lawan-lawan, all of Las Nieves, Agusan del Norte.

Alias Nike/Max turned over one (1) M16 rifle with attached one (1) M203 grenade launcher while alias Andy turned over one (1) revolver to 23IB.

During the ceremony Maj. Gen Andres Centeno, Commander, 4th Infantry Division, Brig. Gen. Maurito L Licudine, 402 Commander and Lt. Col. Julius Cesar C Paulo, the Commanding Officer of 23rd Infantry Battalion and other high ranking army officers witnessed the ceremony.

In his testimony, alias Nike/Max said he was convinced to join the CNT due to promises made to him and his family.

"Na dani man gyud ko sa ilang maayong istorya nga ila kong tabangan ug ang akong pamilya ug isip isa ka lumulupyo nga nagkalisod sa panginabuhi, nag huna-huna sab ko nga makatabang sa akong pamilya. Mao nga nikuyog ko sa ilaha." Alias Mike said.

He emphasized that for more than two years, he and his family gained nothing from the CNT movement.

He added that, "Nag too pud ko nga matabangan ko nila ug sa kadugay nakita namo nga sayop ang baruganan ug prinsipyo nga akong gi-ubanan. Lisod kaayo ang kahimutang sa mga armadong NPA, wala nay makaon ug sige mi ug dagan tungod sa wala nay katawhan nga mo suporta namo ug sa kanunay nga operasyon sa mga sundalo. Mao nga naka huna huna ko ug surrender aron makabalik ko sa akong pamilya."
It can be recalled that nineteen (19) Militia ng Bayan members voluntarily surrendered and two hundred eighty-four underground mass supporters withdrew their support to the CNTs, and took an oath of allegiance to the government last March 26, 2021, at Barangay Ibuan, Las Nieves.

Lt. Col. Julius Cesar C. Paulo welcomed the three (3) former rebels and recognized their courage to abandon the terrorist movement and choose the right path for their lives.
"Life is a precious gift from God to us. It is put upon us how we make use of it. Life is too short so you spend it wisely. If you want to serve the people, serve it legally,” Paulo said.

He also urged the remnant members of the CNTs not to waste their lives following the wrong ideology of the CPP-NPA.
"Your army, especially the 23IB, and the local government units are always ready to help you if you embrace the government. You have enough time to lay down your arms and return to the folds of the law and be with your families," Paulo said.

WESTMINCOM: 7 communist terrorists end their armed struggle on Maundy Thursday

Posted to the Western Mindanao Command (WESTMINCOM) Facebook Page (Apr 3, 2021): 7 communist terrorists end their armed struggle on Maundy Thursday

Camp Navarro, Calarian, Zamboanga City - April 3, 2021
Western Mindanao Command Chief Lt. Gen. Corleto Vinluan, Jr. stated that seven members of the communist terrorist group surrendered to the military on Maundy Thursday, April 1, 2021.

“They submitted themselves to the 103rd Infantry Brigade led by Brig. Gen. Jose Maria Cuerpo II at the unit headquarters in Kampo Ranao, Marawi City,”
said Lt. Gen. Vinluan, Jr.

Noli Tahadan, a.k.a. Ayon/Moloy; Ezel Peling, a.k.a. KR/Angela; Marlon Talatayod, a.k.a. Marlon; Ronald Otacan, a.k.a. Nash; and Jessel Otacan, a.k.a. Margot are members of the Bingo Company, Sub-Regional Committee-5 (SRC-5), North Central Mindanao Regional Command (NCMRC) of the communist terrorist group while Vincent Vallar and Jessa Mae Otocan Talatayod, a.k.a. Mixie are the squad leader and medical personnel of the Guerilla Front 4A, Sub-Regional Committee-3.

“This manifests that we are not only winning the hearts of the peace-loving people of Lanao but also that of the enemies of the state,” said Brig. Gen. Cuerpo II.

During the initial debriefing, most of the surrendered personalities said they can no longer withstand the hardships they continuously suffer from and they realized that they are wasting their lives, time, and efforts for nothing.

The seven were subsequently presented to Joint Task Force ZamPeLan Commander Maj. Gen. Generoso Ponio during the commemoration of the 47th Founding Anniversary of the 103Bde on the same day.
Maj. Gen. Ponio commended the troops of the 103rd Infantry Brigade for this accomplishment.

“This success is attributable to the combined efforts of the troops, the local government units, the intelligence operatives, our partners from other security agencies, and the people,” said Maj. Gen. Ponio.

The surrendered personalities are currently undergoing custodial debriefing for information gathering.
“Those who wish to lay down their arms and join the mainstream society are very much welcome. We are more than willing to assist them in their reintegration,” said Lt. Gen. Vinluan, Jr.

CPP/NDF-Sison: Why the Duterte regime cannot destroy the people’s revolutionary movement

Posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Apr 3, 2021): Why the Duterte regime cannot destroy the people’s revolutionary movement


APRIL 03, 2021

It is certain that Duterte and his political agents and armed minions will claim before, during and after his State of the National Address (SONA) in July 2021 that they have already destroyed the revolutionary movement and that they must be rewarded by being allowed to stay in power. They have been harping on the line that they have already destroyed the NPA several times over its underestimated size.

They must be reminded time and again that they cannot destroy the revolutionary movement with sheer military force and deception but that they can only escalate and make the oppressive and exploitative conditions more intolerable to the people and more favorable for the growth in strength and advance of the people’s democratic revolution through protracted people’s war.

1. The basic problems of the Filipino people such as foreign monopoly capitalism, domestic feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism persist as the root causes of the civil war. These are the causes of underdevelopment, unemployment and mass poverty and not the people’s resistance to oppression and exploitation.

2. The chronic crisis of the semicolonial and semifeudal ruling system continues and is worsening to favor the further rise and advance of the people’s war against te reactionary state. The Duterte regime is culpable for th rapid worsening of the socio-economic and political crisis of the ruling system.

3. The crisis of the ruling system is aggravated by the worsening crisis of overproduction in the world capitalist system and is further aggravated by the Covid-19 pandemic in terms of economic breakdown, mass unemployment and depressed incomes.

4. The ruling system has been bankrupted by the domestic and global economic crisis, bureaucratic corruption and military overspending. The Duterte regime is culpable for sabotaging the peace negotiations with the NDFP for the purpose of scapegoating the CPP and NPA and grabbing absolute power for the purpose of absolute corruption.

5. The Duterte regime is despicable to the Filipino people because of its crimes of treason, tyranny, mass murder, plunder and deception. No amount of psywar to worship Duterte or his regime and vilify social activists, critics and opposition can draw attention away from the crisis and crimes for which the regime is culpable

6. The armed revolution of the people has become stronger nationwide in both urban and rural areas because of the foregoing. The more than 110 guerrilla fronts of the NPA are increasing in number and serving as base for guerrilla warfare, mass mobilization and building organs of political power.

7. A broad united front of patriotic and progressive forces is developing widely and deeply against the Duterte tyranny as the narrow target of popular opposition. The united front includes the revolutionary forces of the toiling masses of workers and peasants, the progressive forces of the middle social strata and the conservative opposition.

8. The Communist Party of the Philippines is daily engaged in ideological, political and organizational work to strengthen its ranks and the revolutionary mass movement. There is no way for the enemy to stop the secret recruitment and education of CPP members and their deployment in birth urban and rural areas. Repression will only incite more people to join the CPP and the armed revolution.

9. All patriotic and progressive forces are strengthening themselves and exerting all-out efforts to isolate and overthrow the Duterte regime. The revolutionary mass organizations of the workers, peasants, women, youth and other sectors of society have not been cowed by state terrorism but have become more resolute and more resolute in fighting and striving to defeat the regime.

10. The New People’s Army is intensifying the people’s war, with the support of the people’s militia, self-defense units and the broad masses of the people. It is combining armed struggle with agrarian revolution and mass-base building. And it has a mastery of the strategy and tactics of extensive and intensive guerrilla warfare on the basis of the ever widening and deepening mass base as in the past 52 years.###

Kalinaw News: Tatlong regular na mga miyembro ng teroristang CPP-NPA, nagbalik-loob sa pamahalaan ngayong panahon ng Semana Santa

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 3, 2021): Tatlong regular na mga miyembro ng teroristang CPP-NPA, nagbalik-loob sa pamahalaan ngayong panahon ng Semana Santa

CAMP MELCHOR F DELA CRUZ, Upi, Gamu, Isabela- Matapos makapagnilay-nilay ngayong panahon ng Semana Santa, magkasunod na boluntaryong sumuko sa hanay ng 86th at 95th Infantry Battalion at ng kapulisan ang tatlong mga regular na miyembro ng teroristang Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) sa lalawigan ng Isabela noong ika-2 ng Abril taong kasalukuyan.

Unang sumuko sa hanay ng 86IB si alyas Popoy ng Squad Uno, Regional Sentro De Gravidad (RSDG), Komiteng Rehiyon-Cagayan Valley (KR-CV) sa Sitio Jet, Barangay Rizal, San Guillermo, Isabela. Narekrut siya noong Oktubre ng taong 2020 ng isang alyas Andong.

Kasama si alyas Popoy sa mga miyembro ng teroristang CPP-NPA na nakasagupa ng tropa ng 86IB sa nangyaring engkwentro sa San Guillermo noong ika-15 ng Marso taong kasalukuyan na kung saan, nasawi si alyas Yuni -ang pinakamataas na Komander ng teroristang CPP-NPA sa Lambak ng Cagayan . Ayon sa kanya, sinuwerte siyang makatakas mula sa kanyang mga kasamahan na ayaw siyang payagang tumiwalag mula sa kanilang kilusan. Aniya, pagod na siyang nakikipagtaguan sa mga otoridad at ayaw nang maranasan pa ang ilang araw na gutom dahil sa palipat-lipat nilang paghahanap ng matutuluyan. Pagsasalaysay pa ni alyas Popoy, kahit labag sa kanyang kalooban ang makipagsagupaan sa tropa ng pamahalaan, pinilit at tinatakot siya ng mga kadre ng teroristang CPP-NPA. Kung kaya, labis ang kanyang kagustuhang umalis sa teroristang kilusan at ipinagpapasalamat niya nang siya ay tinanggap ng pamahalaan sa kabila ng kanyang ginawang pag-anib sa teroristang grupo.

Habang sa bayan naman ng San Mariano sa kaparehong lalawigan, sabay na sumuko sa mga otoridad sina alyas Kalahati/Rocket/Rudy, lider ng Squad Dos ng RSDG, KR-CV, narekrut noong taong 2017 ng isang alyas Bang, at alyas Kevin/Ron-Ron/Benjamin, Supply Officer naman ng Squad Tres ng RSDG, KR-CV, napasampa naman siya nina alyas Mandy, Rona, Zaldy at Lopez noong taong 2016.

Anila, sobrang paghihirap ang kanilang naranasan mula nang sila ay sumampa sa teroristang kilusan. Wala umanong naambag na mabuti sa kanilang pamumuhay ang ginawang pag-anib taliwas sa mga binitawang pangako sa kanila.

Sa ngayon ay nasa kustodiya na ng mga otoridad ang mga nagbalik-loob para sa kanilang seguridad habang inilalakad naman ang kanilang mga makukuhang benepisyo sa ilalim ng Enhance Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP).

Samantala, sinabi naman ni MGen Laurence E Mina PA, Commander ng 5th Infantry Division, Philippine Army na magandang pagkakataon ang paggunita ng Semana Santa upang pagnilayan ng mga natitira pang miyembro ng rebeldeng CPP-NPA ang kanilang mga maling nagawa. Aniya, patuloy pa rin sa pagbibigay ng pagkakataon ang pamahalaan sa mga nagnanais na magbaba ng kanilang armas at magbalik-loob sa pamahalaan. “Habang ginugunita natin ang Semana Santa, napapanahon na para sa mga natitira pang mga miyembro ng rebeldeng CPP-NPA na pagnilayan ang mga ginawang pagpapahirap sa kanilang mga biktima. Hinihintay pa rin namin kayo na magbalik-loob sa pamahalaan. Nakahanda ang mga tulong ng gobyerno para sa inyong pagbabagong buhay. Batid namin ang inyong mahirap na sitwasyon kung kaya tama na ang pagpapahirap sa inyong mga sarili. Tayo ay magkaisa sa pagtamo ng ating hinahangad na kaunlaran at katahimikan sa ating lugar.”

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

Kalinaw News: Anti-Communist Terrorist Group Awareness Campaign Commences for the Youth in Misamis Oriental

Posted to Kalinaw News (Apr 3, 2021): Anti-Communist Terrorist Group Awareness Campaign Commences for the Youth in Misamis Oriental

CLAVERIA, Misamis Oriental – The 58th Infantry Dimalulupig Battalion (IB) conducted a three-day online information drive to the students of St. Peter’s College of Balingasag through video teleconferencing (VTC), March 29 to 31, 2021.

Recognizing that communist insurgency has lasted far too long because of resource generation in terms of manpower, the 58IB is concerned that the CPP-NPA-NDF poses a major threat to the province of Misamis Oriental’s youth, thus initiating an awareness campaign in the province’s universities and colleges.

The information drive, dubbed as “Lamang ang May Alam: An Anti CPP-NPA-NDF Youth Recruitment Online Info Drive” is aimed specifically at senior high school and college students as the youth in the universities and colleges were proven to become sources of their manpower and schools have now become platforms of the CPP-NPA-NDF in exploiting the youth. Many seemingly harmless student organizations have ulterior motive of deceiving the young to support the CPP-NPA-NDF’s cause, and ultimately enter the armed struggle, falling victim to the pitfalls of the enemy.

During the first wave of the info drive, the 58IB was able to reach out to approximately 300 students of St. Peter’s College of Balingasag, and delivered lectures on the Army and the Government’s interventions in coping with communist insurgency in the country, as well as the CPP-NPA-NDF’s recruitment schemes. The info drive’s primary objective was to educate students about youth recruitment schemes and persuade them not to help or join the CPP-NPA-NDF in any way; the secondary objective was to have the students informed on the government’s efforts in fighting against insurgency and protecting the youth.

The info drive culminated in a constructive and engaging dialogue between the students and the 58IB troops, with several of them testifying that they were unaware of the CPP-NPA-NDF’s manipulative methods in exploiting their personal issues in order to convince them to enter the Communist Terrorist Group. Some of them took part in an online survey to share their opinions.

“They’re only destroying the youth, they are destroying our country, for them, no government is doing its job because they wanted to take the lead. Leading to what? To insurgency, to killing innocents and recruiting the youth and bring to the mountains. I urge the communist terrorist group to stop using our vulnerabilities to deceive us and join their cause. Stop your propaganda. Stop the killings. Stop the deceptions. Stop the lies. Stop recruiting minors.” one of the students said.

Meanwhile, Lt. Col. Ricky L Canatoy, Commanding Officer of 58IB expressed appreciation to the students and the school for their support and for allowing the 58IB to conduct an information drive, saying, “We are doing this activity to warn you of the CPP-NPA-NDF’s true intentions, which is to kill and harm the future of our youth. ‘Ang Kabataan ang pag-asa ng Bayan,’ as Dr. Jose Rizal put it. I hope you can stand up to it and do what is best for you, which is doing the right thing. Be wise on your choices. There may be social issues and injustices that the CTG uses as propaganda, but rest assured that, in the midst of the pandemic, the government is working hand in hand to ensure the delivery of services to the people, and particularly to deter the growth of this terrorist group that continues to threaten the state’s sovereignty.”

“This is only the beginning, as 58IB envisions the whole of Misamis Oriental’s colleges and universities be informed and aware on the CPP/NPA/NDF’s youth recruitment schemes.” Lt. Col Canatoy ended.

[Kalinaw News is the official online source of information on the pursuit for peace in the Philippines This website is a property of the Civil-Military Operations Regiment, Philippine Army located at Lawton Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City. Contact us:]

PRLEC holds dialogue with far-flung village residents in Ilocos Sur

From the Philippine Information Agency (Apr 3, 2021): PRLEC holds dialogue with far-flung village residents in Ilocos Sur (By Joyah Mae C. Quimoyog)

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CERVANTES, Ilocos Sur, Apr. 3 (PIA) - As part of the whole-of-nation-approach of the government in addressing issues to reduce poverty, the Poverty Reduction, Livelihood and Employment Cluster (PRLEC) of the Provincial Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (PTF-ELCAC) conducted a dialogue with the residents of Sitio Biwak, Barangay Malaya here, to know and eventually address their needs amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

Situated three kilometers away from the Bessang Pass Natural Monument in Barangay Malaya, Sitio Biwak is the highest village a vehicle can reach out of the 17 villages of said barangay, according to Cervantes Mayor Benjamin Maggay II.

When taken by foot, it requires up to one and a half hours of walk.

It usually takes the locals more or less than an hour to reach the city proper by vehicle as the road to the sitio is narrow and steep with some concrete tire paths.

However, this didn’t hinder the personnel of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) in the Ilocos, as the lead agency of the PRLEC, to explain various programs and services that member-agencies of PRLEC can provide to them.

With the help of the local government unit (LGU) of Cervantes and the Philippine Army (PA) through the 69th Infantry (COUGAR) Battalion, 702nd Infantry (DEFENDER) Brigade, 7th Infantry (KAUGNAY) Division, PA, the community dialogue was held Monday, March 29 led by PRLEC Regional Cluster lead and TESDA Ilocos Regional Director Vincent Cifra and TESDA-Ilocos Sur Provincial Director Socorro Galanto.

Said dialogue has been successful as it was participated in by 20 residents/family heads including ABC President and Barangay Chairman Rolando Acyangan, and teacher Gerlie Caoili of the Biwak Primary School.

"Nandito po ang gobyerno para alamin kung ano ang mga plano ninyo para paunlarin ang inyong sitio, at nais namin sa PRLEC na matulungan kayo sa plano ninyo sa pamamagitan ng training at iba pang interventions na pasok sa mandato ng iba't ibang member-agencies ng PRLEC. Pag-aralan po natin kung saan tayo pwede magtulungan para mapaunlad ang inyong sitio," Cifra told the residents.

Various concerns were raised including their acquisition of land titles, scholarship for the youth, value adding for food products as they have wide farm lands producing crops such as potato, carrot, cabbage, Chinese cabbage, and chayote exported to La Trinidad, Benguet and/or in Candon City and Tagudin, both in Ilocos Sur.

With regards to the acquisition of land title, Mario Alladog, who has been staying at the village for over 30 years, expressed his gratitude to the PRLEC for given the opportunity to discuss this matter with the LGU and its member-agencies concerned such as the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Department of Agrarian Reform, and/or the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples, as most of the villagers are members of the Kankanaey tribe.

“Isa sa mga concerns naman ay itong pagkakaroon namin ng titulo sa mga lupang tinatamnan namin lalo na ang mga tinayuan ng aming mga tahanan dahil matagal naman na kami rito at nais din sana naming tumulong sa gobyerno na magbayad ng buwis, gayundin na sana may maipamana man lamang kami sa aming mga anak at kapamilya sa mga susunod pang mga taon,” he said.

Ending the dialogue, Cifra added, "Sinadya po talaga namin na maabot kayo rito sa inyong lugar kahit gaano pa kalayo at kataas. Mataas po talaga dahil hindi na kinaya ng isa naming sasakyan na umakyat. Nasira na ata ang clutch. At 2 p.m. pa lang ay natatakpan na tayo ng ulap. Sinadya po namin kayo rito bilang pagpapakita po ng taos-pusong pakikiisa sa inyong komunidad. Mabuhay po kayo!"

Alladog also expressed his gratitude not just to the PRLEC but also to the Community Support Program team of the 69 Infantry Battalion deployed in their community who has been providing basic services to them since their deployment in November 2020.

“Malaki ang pasasalamat namin sa inyo dahil kahit na mahirap abutin ang aming lugar ay binisita niyo kami at ipinakilala ang iba't ibang programa ng gobyerno na makatutulong sa lahat ng sektor dito sa aming komunidad, lalo na sa kasundaluhan na tumutulong sa amin dito, maraming salamat sa inyong lahat!” he added. (JCR/AMB/JMCQ/PIA Ilocos Sur)

Army playground brings joy to kids in formerly abandoned barangay

From the Philippine Information Agency (Apr 3, 2021): Army playground brings joy to kids in formerly abandoned barangay (By Rene V. Carbayas with reports from 4SFBN, PA)

ISABELA CITY, Basilan, April 02 (PIA) – The formerly abandoned community of Barangay Muslim Area have once again come to life after an army playground was setup and brought joy to kids in the area.

The 4th Special Forces Battalion formally inaugurated the ‘Siklab-Diwa Playground’ together with the distribution of hygiene kits, soccer balls, and feeding program on April 01 that brought happiness to the kids and parents who are returning back in their community.

The ‘Siklab-Diwa: Project Playground’ consists of four apparatuses, namely: a twin slide, couple swing, seesaw, and a monkey bar, which were attractively painted in rainbow colors. Five soccer balls were likewise donated to the community for the soccer-enthusiast children. Project playground intends to provide an avenue for psychosocial development of the children and for them to build friendship, unity, and cohesiveness in the community.

“Sa playground nagsisimula ang pagkakaibigan at pagkakaisa ng mga bata na siyang panghahawakan nila hanggang sa kanilang paglaki. Sa playground nagsisimula ang isang komunidad,” First Lieutenant Alvin K. Balancod, the Commanding Officer of 14th Special Forces Company based in Maluso said.

Lieutenant Colonel Alex D. Ampati, the Commanding Officer of 4SFBn, also expressed high hopes for a brighter future of Barangay Muslim Area now that peace is at hand and the constituents have already returned after almost four years of being internally displaced due to the threat from the terrorist Abu Sayyaf Group roaming around its vicinity before.

“Sa pamamagitan ng pagtutulungan ng iba’t ibang sektor at ahensya ng lokal na pamahalaan dito sa Basilan, tiyak na manunumbalik ang sigla, saya, at kapayapaan sa barangay. Asahan nyo po na ang inyong kasundaluhan ay palaging narito upang magbigay seguridad at susuporta sa inyo,” LTColonel Ampati said.

Meanwhile, the Nagdilaab Foundation Inc. headed by its Executive Director, Ms. Miriam Suacito distributed some eighty (80) hygiene kits that contain bath soap, laundry soap, fabric mask, toothbrush, toothpaste, sanitary napkin, shampoo, nail cutter, dishwashing liquid, and BIDA kit bag with BIDA, DOH, and USAID logos.

After the ribbon-cutting ceremony, the Assembly of God Church led by Ms. Brenda Elnar also conducted a feeding program to some sixty (60) children in the community.

“Tayo po ay taos pusong nagpapasalamat sa pagbibigay ng sigla sa aming lugar at sa aming mga kabataan. Sa bawat ngiti, saya nila, ganun din ang nararamdaman ng mga magulang nila,” Amin A. Pansulani, the Chairman of Barangay Muslim Area said.

The Siklab-Diwa Playground was donated by the members of PMA Class 2014 for the peace-loving sons and daughters of Barangay Muslim Area, and as memorabilia for the heroism of their fallen comrade, the late 1LT Jun G. Corpuz. (RVC/PIA9-Basilan with reports from 1Lt. Clint Ramos–CMO 4SFBN, PA)

BCDA eyes transfer of PAF housing, support facilities to New Clark City

From the Philippine Information Agency (Apr 3, 2021): BCDA eyes transfer of PAF housing, support facilities to New Clark City (By Carlo Lorenzo J. Datu)

NEW CLARK CITY, April 3 (PIA) -- Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) has allotted about PhP3 billion for Philippine Air Force (PAF) housing and support facilities that will be relocated to a 65-hectare site in New Clark City.

“We have already completed the Detailed Architectural and Engineering Design for the PAF housing facilities,” BCDA President and Chief Executive Officer Vince Dizon disclosed.

Moreover, the state firm is also in the process of preparing the Detailed Architectural and Engineering Design for the new PAF operational facilities that will be relocated in a 146-hectare property near OMNI area.

BCDA is actively engaging with PAF to ensure that the new operational facilities comply with their requirements.

“From the PAF housing, you can go to New Clark City in 10 to 15 minutes, and to Clark International Airport in 10 to 15 minutes using an access road. Works are ongoing for a 20-kilometer access road and this will be finished by next year. From Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway, it will only take you less than 30 minutes to get to New Clark City. We made sure the PAF housing site will be accessible via the major thoroughfares,” Dizon said.

Bases Conversion and Development Authority has allotted about PhP3 billion for Philippine Air Force housing and support facilities that will be relocated to a 65-hectare site in New Clark City. (BCDA File Photo)

In August 2019, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and Dizon signed a Memorandum of Agreement for the relocation of PAF’s housing and operational areas to Clark.

“To continue our commitment of helping strengthen the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and promote national development, we at BCDA will always look for ways to transform former military bases and properties into premier centers of economic growth with the help of our private sector partners,” Dizon said.

He stressed that BCDA will double its efforts to raise much-needed revenues for the government amid the financial debacle posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Our mandate to strengthen the capabilities of AFP transcends all threats. However, by building modern cities in partnership with the private sector, we strive to continuously raise more funds for the modernization of the AFP as well as provide for the welfare of our troops and the entire nation especially in this difficult period,” he said. (CLJD-PIA 3)

364 rebels in North, Central Luzon surrender in 1st quarter of 2021

From the Philippine Information Agency (Apr 3, 2021): 364 rebels in North, Central Luzon surrender in 1st quarter of 2021 (By Carlo Lorenzo J. Datu) 

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TARLAC CITY, April 3 (PIA) -- About 364 members of the New People’s Army (NPA) in Regions 1,2,3 and Cordillera surrendered to government forces during the 1st quarter of 2021.

Armed Forces of the Philippines Northern Luzon Command Commander Lt.Gen. Arnulfo Marcelo Burgos Jr.
disclosed that the returnees also yielded a total of 34 firearms.

These are in addition to the 396 rebels who surrendered last year and yielded 191 firearms. All have received various government aid under the Enhanced Comprehensive Localized Integration Program (E-CLIP).

“The 322 returnees last January and February this year are awaiting the release of their respective E-CLIP grants, while the remaining 42 rebels who surrendered last March are currently undergoing processing of their requirements to avail it,” Burgos furthered.

Apart from the surrenders, the security forces likewise neutralized during the 1st quarter of 2021 several high-profile officials of NPA in Northern and Central Luzon during the conduct of internal security and law enforcement operations

These include Rommel Tucay, the Secretary of Kilusang Larangang Gerilya Sierra Madre; Rudy Daguitan alias Pinpin, the Political Officer of Kilusang Larangang Gerilya Baggas; Nora Miguel alias Gemay, the Medical Officer of Kilusang Larangang Gerilya Baggas; Delfin Pimentel of Central Luzon Regional Committee; and Rosalio Canubas alias Yuni, the leader of the NPA’s Regional Operations Command and concurrently the 2nd Deputy Secretary of Komiteng Rehiyon – Cagayan Valley.

“Sustained internal security and law enforcement operations coupled with the overwhelming support from local government units and the general public enabled the government troops to successfully thwart any terroristic action by communist terrorists in Northern and Central Luzon. Their leaders continue to fall while their disgruntled members surrender in droves to government forces. These are manifestations that the NPA’s defeat in this part of the country is inevitable,” Burgos stressed.

“We are determined to totally defeat the communist terrorists by the end of this year. We are right on track in winning the peace and promoting development for the peace-loving citizens of this part of the country. We will press on the fight and end the local communist armed conflict once and for all,” he furthered.

Burgos renewed his call to the remaining members of NPA to surrender.

“We are appealing to our misguided brothers and sisters in Northern and Central Luzon to contemplate and do the right thing. Lay down your arms, abandon your armed struggle and return to government fold for your sake and for the sake of your families,” he said. (CLJD-PIA 3)

AFP says illegal structures spotted off WPS not new

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 3, 2021): AFP says illegal structures spotted off WPS not new (By Priam Nepomuceno)

Armed Forces of the Philippines spokesperson, Marine Major General Edgard Arevalo (PNA File photo)

The military on Saturday clarified that the illegal structures earlier spotted during a maritime patrol at the West Philippine Sea on March 30 are not new constructions.

"Except for five past recorded constructions in the Union Banks – two of which were by the Chinese and three by the Vietnamese – we have observed no new constructions,"
Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) spokesperson, Marine Major General Edgard Arevalo, said in a statement Saturday,

Arevalo said the AFP will remain unrelenting in providing pertinent data to the Department of National Defense and the National Task Force for the West Philippine Sea (NTF WPS) on
"the situation that impinges on our sovereignty and our enjoyment of our sovereign rights."

AFP chief, Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, earlier said the maritime patrol was able to document illegal man-made structures on some of the features.

The AFP, Arevalo said, is very much concerned over the continued presence of Chinese vessels in the Julian Felipe Reef that is an integral part of Pagkakaisa Banks.

Pagkakaisa Banks is under the jurisdiction of the Municipality of Kalayaan, Palawan while Julian Felipe Reef is a large boomerang-shaped shallow coral reef at the northeast of Pagkakaisa Banks and Reefs (Union Reefs), located approximately 175 nautical miles west of Bataraza, Palawan.

He added that the AFP joins DND Secretary Delfin Lorenzana in calling out these incursions and will continue to monitor the country's exclusive economic zone (EEZ) through regular air and maritime sovereignty patrols apart from the 24/7 land-based monitoring stations.

The National Task Force for the West Philippine Sea earlier expressed concern about a Philippine Coast Guard report that around 220 Chinese fishing vessels, believed to be manned by Chinese maritime militia personnel, were sighted in line formation at the Julian Felipe Reef on March 7.

Leave; no reason to stay in PH reef, Lorenzana to Chinese ships

From the Philippine News Agency (Apr 3, 2021): Leave; no reason to stay in PH reef, Lorenzana to Chinese ships (By Priam Nepomuceno)

PNA file photo

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana on Saturday sought the immediate departure of the remaining Chinese ships from the Juan Felipe Reef in the West Philippine Sea, saying they have no reason to stay there.

Lorenzana said the continued encroachment demands a serious explanation from the Chinese envoy to the Philippines.

"The Chinese Ambassador has a lot of explaining to do. As of our latest maritime and aerial surveillance, there are still 44 Chinese vessels that are in Julian Felipe Reef,”
he said.

He said he is not a fool since the weather has been good so far hence, the ships have no other reason to stay there.

“These vessels should be on their way out. Umalis na kayo diyan (Leave now),"
he said in a statement.

The National Task Force for the West Philippine Sea earlier expressed concern over a Philippine Coast Guard report that about 220 Chinese fishing vessels, believed to be manned by Chinese maritime militia personnel, were sighted in line formation at the Julian Felipe Reef on March 7.

The reef is located approximately 175 nautical miles west of Bataraza, Palawan.

"We have already lodged our diplomatic protest stating unequivocally our stand on the issue. We, again, reiterate our demand for the Chinese to leave our sovereign territories and abide by international law," Lorenzana said.