Sunday, September 19, 2021

50 ex-rebels, kin receive COVID-19 jabs

From the Philippine Star (Sep 20, 2021): 50 ex-rebels, kin receive COVID-19 jabs (By Michael Punongbayan)

Fifty former New People’s Army (NPA) guerrillas in Northern Mindanao and their dependents have been inoculated with anti-COVID vaccines.

The vaccination activities conducted in several areas in the region last week were a fulfillment of a commitment of the Army’s 4th Infantry Division to protect the NPA surrenderees as well as those who were captured or arrested from contracting the virus, 4th ID commander Maj. Gen. Romeo Brawner Jr. said.

The inoculation of the former rebels was facilitated by the 4th ID in coordination with local government units.

Last week, Brawner pledged to secure vaccines for former rebels after learning that an NPA fatality and seven guerrillas who were captured following a firefight in Bukidnon tested positive for COVID.

Last Thursday, the Army’s 88th Infantry Battalion (IB), in coordination with the municipal government of Maramag in Bukidnon, facilitated the vaccination of 11 former rebels and their six dependents who received Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines.

The Army’s 58th IB also coordinated with the local government of Claveria in Misamis Oriental for the inoculation of 15 former rebels.

The same activities were conducted in Buenavista, Agusan del Norte and in San Miguel, Surigao del Sur.

Brawner said the 4th ID is serious in its offer to vaccinate NPA guerrillas and leaders who would surrender and return to the fold of the law.

He said more than 20,000 doses of COVID vaccines were allotted for personnel of the 4th ID.

The Army could share the vaccine with the rebels who would lay down their arms, Brawner said.

Meanwhile, Baguio City logged a new record high of confirmed COVID cases in a day.

Baguio’s health service office said the new cases hit 411 as of 5 p.m. on Saturday. The figure surpassed the 289 cases recorded on Sept. 11.

Mayor Benjamin Magalong said the high number of cases was due to “result dumping” or the accumulation of test results at the molecular laboratory.

Northern Negros Natural Park trekking activities suspended amid insurgency threat

From the Sun Star-Bacolod (Sep 19, 2021): Northern Negros Natural Park trekking activities suspended amid insurgency threat (By TERESA D. ELLERA)

NEGROS. Trekking activities at the Northern Negros Natural Park are temporarily suspended due to reported presence of insurgents. (NNNP photo)

THE management of Northern Negros Natural Park (NNNP) has ordered the suspension of major trekking activities in the place due to the presence of insurgents in some of the hinterlands of the province.

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Escalante folks vow to renounce NPA

From the Sun Star-Bacolod (Sep 19, 2021): Escalante folks vow to renounce NPA (By TERESA D. ELLERA)

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO. 79IB commanding officer Lieutenant Colonel J-jay Javines encourages residents of Escalante City to renounce the atrocities of the New People's Army. (Contributed photo)

A PLEDGE of commitment was signed by residents of Barangay Balintawak in Escalante City, Negros Occidental on Friday, September 17, 2021, to stop extending any assistance to the New People's Army (NPA).

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‘Black powder’ used in Maguindanao blast that targeted LGBT volleyball players

From the Business Mirror (Sep 19, 2021): ‘Black powder’ used in Maguindanao blast that targeted LGBT volleyball players (BY RENE ACOSTA)

A HOMEMADE bomb made up of “black powder” was used for an explosion that killed one person and wounded seven others in Datu Piang in Maguindanao, authorities said on Sunday as they continued to investigate the blast.

Lt. Col. John Paul Baldomar, spokesman of the Army’s 6th Infantry Battalion, said
the bombers used a command-detonated bomb utilizing black powder as the charge in the blast that ripped through the covered court of Datu Piang.

Norodin S. Musa, 21, was killed during the explosion while seven others were wounded on Saturday afternoon while a group of LGBT people were playing volleyball at the town’s covered court.

Baldomar said they have not identified any group yet behind the attack, although they were looking at the possible involvement of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters and the Daulah Islamiyah, the loose group of local terrorists allied with the Islamic State (IS).

He said the use of black powder as the charge has been common in past bombings in Maguindanao. It has been used by local terrorists and groups since they were trained on how to use and make it by members of the IS and other international terrorist groups.

Baldomar said investigators were ascertaining the motive of the attack, which occurred as the military sustains its combat operations against terrorists in Maguindanao and other parts of Central Mindanao, hinting it could have been the terrorists’ “diversionary attack.”

A reported threat from a group, warning the victims who are LGBT members to “straighten up,” was also being looked into.

“Another motive that we are looking into . . . is they received threats weeks ago, warning them that they will be made to answer if they will not change,” Baldomar said, noting the threats reportedly made it clear that being a bisexual is against Islam.

The group which made the threats has not been identified.

Meanwhile, National Police chief General Guillermo Eleazar ordered the Police Regional Office-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region (PRO-BAR) to work with the military in identifying the perpetrators behind the attack.

The PNP chief also ordered police forces in Mindanao to intensify security in the region following the bombing, which came as the Philippine National Police begins its security preparations for the national elections next year.

Eleazar ordered the PRO-BAR to conduct a thorough probe into the explosion.

CPP/NPA-Central Negros: NPA harasses CAA detachment

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Sep 19, 2021): NPA harasses CAA detachment


SEPTEMBER 19, 2021

A CAFGU Active Auxiliary detachment was harassed on September 8, 2:30 in the afternoon by Red fighters of the Leonardo Panaligan Command – New People’s Army (LPC-NPA) at Barangay Guba, Vallehermoso, Negros Oriental.

According to LPC-NPA spokesperson Ka JB Regalado, residents who witnessed the incident reported “the death of a fascist soldier.”

Regalado explained that the NPA responded to the demand of the people for the punishment of the CAA elements, under the administration of the 62nd Infantry Battalion, who violated human rights of civilians, spread disinformation or deception, forcibly recruited the youth to join the CAFGU by threatening and red-tagging them, pressured peasants to surrender as NPA members and perpetrated extrajudicial killings.

CPP/NDF-PKM-Ilocos: Rebolusyon Sagot sa Batas Militar at Pasismo

Propaganda statement posted to the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) Website (Sep 19, 2021): Rebolusyon Sagot sa Batas Militar at Pasismo


SEPTEMBER 19, 2021


Nakapunla sa lupa ang dugo ng mga magbubukid at mamamayan na matapang na nakipaglaban sa diktadurya. Sumusungaw mula sa museleo ng kampo santo ang hinagpis ng daan-daang biktima ng batas militar. Ang kasaysayan ng magiting na pakikibaka ng sambayanang Pilipino sa diktaduryang Marcos ay hinding-hindi malilimot at ito’y magpapatuloy dahil umiiral pa rin ang pasismo sa kasalukuyang mala-kolonyal at mala-pyudal na lipunan, at ang multo nito ay nagkakawangis sa mukha ng tiranikong rehimeng Duterte.

Apatnapu’t siyam na taon na ang nakalipas nang ipataw sa masang anakpawis at mamamayang Pilipino ang diktadurya ng rehimeng Marcos. Hindi mabubura sa aming ala-ala at hindi malilimot ang karahasan nito at pang-aapi sa aming mga magbubukid. Naririyan ang mga pagdukot, pagtortyur, panggagahasa sa aming mga ina at kapatid, pagpatay at pagmasaker. Subalit hindi kami ginapi ng takot at teror. Pinagkaisa kami ng pagnanais na kumawala sa tumitinding pang-aapi at pagsasamantala. Pinagbuklod kami ng Pambansang Katipunan ng mga Magbubukid. Itinuro sa amin ang rebolusyonaryong pagkakaisa at sama-samang pagkilos. Ipinaliwanag ang landas ng pakikibaka sa gitna ng malupit na batas militar. Ipinatanaw sa amin ang maningning na bukas kung saan makakamit ang tunay na repormang agraryo. At sa aming pawis, talino at lakas ng pagkakaisa, hinahawaan ang landas ng sosyalismo. Habang kami ay hinalihaw ng marahas at mersenaryong militar ni Marcos, iniluwal mula sa aming hanay ang magigiting na anak ng bayan na sumapi at nag-armas upang maging mga Pulang mandirigma ng New People’s Army. Pinalawak at pinalalim nito ang pagkakaisa ng mamamayan sa kanayunan.

Makalipas ang dalawampu’t isang taon, ibinagsak nang nagkakaisa at nang armadong mamamayan ang diktaduryang Marcos. Subalit hindi dito nagtapos ang magiting na pakikibaka ng mamamayan.

Apatnapu’t siyam na taon simula ng ipataw ang batas militar, libo-libong rebolusyonaryong magsasaka at mamamayan ang iniluwal ng magiting na pakikibaka para sa demokrasya at sosyalismo. Daan-daang nagmartir at nag-alay ng buhay para sa malayang bukas. Patuloy na umaalingawngaw ang putok ng riple ng mga gerilya ng Bagong Hukbong Bayan upang ibaon ang nagbabagang punglo sa puso ng mababangis na AFP at PNP. Sa gitna ng pandemya at pasismo, ang lansangan ay nagngingitngit pa rin sa mga sigaw ng nakikibakang Pilipino para sa karapatan, katarungang panlipunan at pambansang demokrasya.

Mangamba at matakot ang naghaharing-uri! Limampu’t dalawang taon nang nagpasya ang magsasaka, manggagawa at sambayanan upang hukayin ang libingan ng imperyalismo, burukrata-kapitalismo at pyudalismo sa Pilipinas. Determinado at buo ang loob, pinamunuan ng Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas ang makasaysayang pakikibaka ng sambayanag Pilipino.

Bagu-baguhin man ang kasaysayan, supilin man ang naghihirap at nagugutom na sambayanan, hinding-hindi kailanman mawawasak ng sindikatong gang ng National Task Force-End Local Communist Armed Conflict ang makasaysayang pakikibaka ng magsasaka para sa repormang agraryo, ng kapatid naming mga manggagawa na inilalaban ang karapatan at nakabubuhay na sahod, at nang milyun-milyong mamamayan para sa pagbabagong panlipunan.

Hindi nawasak ng dalawampu’t isang taong pasismo at batas militar ni Marcos ang rebolusyonaryong kilusan ng mamamayan. Pangingibabawan nito at higit na susulong sa kabangisan ng reaksyunaryo at tiranikong rehimeng Duterte.

Nauulit ang kasaysayan para doon sa mga hindi natututo sa aral nito. At ang pagbabagong panlipunan ay isisilang mismo mula sa luma at inaagnas na sistemang nagpupumilit manatili. Mananaig at mananaig ang makatarungang pakikibaka at rebolusyonaryong mithiin ng milyong magbubukid at aping mamamayan. #




Kalinaw News: 81 Former Members of NPA Mass Base Undergo Re-orientation

Posted to Kalinaw News (Sep 19, 2021): 81 Former Members of NPA Mass Base Undergo Re-orientation

MAKILALA, COTABATO – Eighty-one members of the New People’s Army underground mass organization (UGMO) undergone a 3-day Peace Building Seminar (PBS) jointly conducted by Makilala and North Cotabato Local Committee on Ending Local Communist Armed Conflict on September 17-19, 2021 held at Makilala National High School.

The participants who were from Barangay Batasan, Biangan, Kisante, Old Bulatukan, New Bulatukan, New Israel, Villa Flores and Leboce all of Makilala, North Cotabato composed of 32 Sangay sa Partido sa Lokalidad (SPL) and 15 Militia ng Bayan recently cut their ties and denounced their affiliation with CPP-NPA-NDF.

The PBS is a 3-day program that serves as a reversal mechanism to re-orient and redirect the former UGMO members from NPA propaganda. It includes information awareness on programs and services of the NGAs, LGUs, LGAs and other partner stakeholders which serves as a tool to disprove the issues being exploited by the NPA terrorist.

Director Restituto Macuto, Regional Director DSWD XII who graced the culminating activity encourage every participants to be advocate of peace.

“The government is always here to help the communities with its peace and development programs. We encourage everyone to embraced peace and let us all support the military and government in ending this local communist armed conflict,” Macuto said.

Highlighted during the activity was the Peace Rally wherein they affirm their allegiance to the government while denouncing the CPP-NPA deceptive propaganda and armed struggle.

During the culmination, participants submitted a project proposal to the LGU which are mostly involves livelihood enhancement.

Likewise, they expressed their support to the Barangay Development Programs after learning the purpose of contributing to the peace and development of communities.

Mr Arnold D Sarvida, one of the participants who was once a Chairman of the Komiteng Rebolusyonaryo sa Barrio (KRB) expressed his appreciation to the activity.

“I thanked the LGU of North Cotabato and other agencies for conducting this PBS and continuously reaching out for communities to achieve lasting peace this helped us understand the true color of the CPP-NPA,” Sarvida said.

Meanwhile, Brigadier General Potenciano Camba, 1002nd Brigade Commander, commended the participants effort, dedication and wholehearted support for the completion of the seminar.

“We encourage everyone to continuously support the government in all its peace and development programs because Ending Local Communist Armed Conflict is the fight of our nation,” Brigadier General Camba said.

[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: 4ID fulfills promise, facilitates vaccination of former CPP-NPA-NDF members

Posted to Kalinaw News (Sep 19, 2021): 4ID fulfills promise, facilitates vaccination of former CPP-NPA-NDF members

CAMP EVANGELISTA, Cagayan de Oro City – the 4th Infantry (Diamond) Division is fulfilling its promise to the leaders and members of the Communist Terrorist Group (CTG) or the CPP-NPA-NDF that the AFP will help them get vaccinated once they decide to return to the peaceful path and cooperate with the government.

In coordination with Local Government Units, 4ID’s line Battalions facilitated the vaccination of former CPP-NPA-NDF members and leaders in respective AORs as promised by Major General Romeo S Brawner Jr, Commander of the 4ID, upon learning that some of the CPP-NPA Terrorists (CNTs) tested positive of COVID-19 after they were captured during the Bukidnon clashes.

It can be recalled that seven (7) out of 14 captured CNTs were tested and found positive of COVID-19 including one (1) of the four (4) killed CNTs after the clashes in Bukidnon province last September 8 and 10, 2021. Also found COVID-19 positive is Adelaida “Loida” Magpatok alias Gwen/Emyang/Kudaw/Robby, former Secretary of FMSR, one of the terrorist group’s consultants, and CPP-NPA-NDF Central Committee member, who was arrested in a joint AFP-PNP operation in Quezon, Bukidnon on September 15, 2021. COVID-19 virus infections are believed to be widespread within the ranks of the CTG in the AOR.

On September 16, 2021, the 88th Infantry Battalion (88IB), in coordination with the LGU of Maramag, Bukidnon, has facilitated the vaccination of 11 former rebels (FRs) and 6 of their dependents with Sinovac and AstraZeneca vaccines. The 58th Infantry Battalion (58IB) in partnership with the LGU of Claveria in Misamis Oriental also facilitated the vaccination of 15 FRs from different units of North Central Mindanao Regional Committee (NCMRC) with Moderna and Sinovac vaccines.

Moreover, the 75th Infantry Battalion (75IB) based in San Miguel, Surigao del Sur also facilitated the vaccination of 7 FRs from GF8, GF19, and SRDG of North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee (NEMRC) with Sinovac vaccines on September 15, 2021. The 23rd Infantry Battalion in Buenavista, Agusan del Norte has also facilitated the vaccination of 6 FRs and 4 of their dependents on the same day.

In addition, Jimwel Azcaraz Salazar, alias Zian/Ben Tuko, was also vaccinated for his 1st Dose with Sinovac on September 17, 2021. He was the Commanding Officer of Sub Regional Sentro De Gravidad (SRSDG) Westland of NEMRC.

In his statement, Maj. Gen. Brawner Jr said that 4ID is serious in offering for the vaccination of CTG members and leaders. He said that many FRs have signified their intention to get vaccinated as they also believe in the danger of the COVID19 virus.

“True to our promise, we have since coordinated with LGU health offices to accommodate CTG members and leaders for vaccination. The personnel of 4ID was allotted more than 20,000 doses of various vaccines which are provided thru the LGUs where our line units are currently located, and these can be shared with the members of CPP-NPA-NDF who will lay down their arms and choose to be safe against the COVID19 virus”, Maj. Gen. Brawner Jr said.

“We reiterate our willingness to share to the CTG members the vaccines intended for our soldiers. We ensure them that we will give them proper medical attention and get them vaccinated once they return to the folds of the law. Let this pandemic become a blessing in disguise where we can unite and begin the phase of totally ending the insurgency problem and tread the path of peace and development”, Maj. Gen. Brawner Jr added.

[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: Gov’t troops nab 1 CTG member and seize firearms and explosives as extensive ops in Masbate continue

Posted to Kalinaw News (Sep 19, 2021): Gov’t troops nab 1 CTG member and seize firearms and explosives as extensive ops in Masbate continue

CAMP ELIAS ANGELES, Pili, Camarines Sur-The Joint Task Force (JTF) Bicolandia warned the Communist Terrorist Group (CTG) to just return to the folds of the law or else, they will rot in prison.

This after a communist NPA terrorist (CNT) was captured in an armed encounter between the government troops and the CTG in San Pascual, Masbate, Saturday, September 18.

Prior to this, concerned citizens of Barangay Mabini reported about the presence of CTG in their area prompting the elements of 2nd Infantry Battalion (2IB) and PNP to conduct a security operation and encountered six CNTs.

Firefight lasted for five minutes that further resulted to the seizure of two anti-personnel mines (Claymore), one caliber .38 revolver with six live ammunitions, shotgun, ammunitions for M60 machine gun and M14, one handheld radio, and two cellphones.

Lt. Col. Siegfried Felipe Awichen said that the apprehended CNT is now under the custody of the Army and will be turned over to proper authorities for dispositive action. He also thanked the residents for the prompt report and encouraged them to continue supporting government programs to finally end armed conflicts in Masbate.

Col. Aldwine Almase, Brigade Commander of 903rd Infantry Brigade, urged the CTG members to stop wasting their lives inside the armed movement.

“Gayahin ninyo ‘yong desisyon ng 113 na nagbalik loob sa pamahalaan at iniwan ang teroristang komunista diyan sa Masbate kamakailan lamang. Mas ginugusto ng inyong kasundaluhan ang mapayapa at kusa ninyong pagbabalik-loob sa pamahalaan, iwan ang armado at marahas na pamumuhay at matanggap ang mga programang sa inyo ay naghihintay upang muli ninyong madama ang panatag at masayang bagong buhay kapiling ang inyong pamilya at mga minamahal sa buhay,” Col. Almase said.

PBGen. Jonnel Estomo, Regional Director of Police Regional Office 5 (PRO-5) also emphasized that the police is now in close coordination with the Army to facilitate the filing of case against the apprehended CNT.

“Sisiyasatin po natin ng maayos kung may iba pang involvements itong nahuli nating CTG member upang maisampa natin kaagad ang kaso laban sa kaniya. Titiyakin po nating dadaan ang lahat sa due process,” PBGen. Estomo said.

Meanwhile, MGEN HENRY A ROBINSON JR PA, Commander of JTF Bicolandia called on the families of the remaining members of the CTG to convince their loved ones to go home.

“Kung ayaw po ninyong iuwi namin sa inyong wala ng buhay ang inyong mga kaanak o kaya naman ay mabulok sila sa bilangguan, tulungan po ninyo kaming kumbinsihin silang magbalik-loob. Ginagawa namin ito para sa inyo, para mabuong muli ang inyong mga pamilya. Sa mga miyembro naman ng CTG, huwag ninyong isakripisyo ang inyong pamilya para sa kilusang hindi naman kayo kayang panindigan,” MGen. Robinson said.

Recently, a total of 113 CTG members and supporters surrendered to the different Community Support Program (CSP) Teams in Masbate.

JTF Bicolandia considered these developments as a result of the growing support of the LGUs, local chief executives, government agencies and the local populace to the campaign against insurgency.

[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:]

Negros Army 98% fully vaccinated

From the Visayan Daily Star (Sep 20, 2021): Negros Army 98% fully vaccinated (BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN)

The Army’s 303rd Infantry Brigade reported yesterday that 98 percent of its personnel assigned in Negros Occidental have been vaccinated.

Brig. Gen. Inocencio Pasaporte, 303rd IB commander, said that 99 percent of 303IB personnel stationed at Camp Gerona in Murcia, and 79th Infantry Battalion soldiers is fully vaccinated, while the figure is 95 percent for the 62nd Infantry Battalion troopers since the inoculation roll out started early this year.

Pasaporte is supervising two Army battalions in Negros Occidental.

He said that the 303rd Infantry Brigade remains ready to serve Negrenses in these challenging times, stressing that availability of vaccines is a welcome development for them to carry out their duties.

Our troops will make good use of this opportunity to confidently and carefully bestow our duties as we jointly seek an end to this pandemic,” Pasaporte said.

He also thanked the provincial government of Negros Occidental and other local government units to have Army soldiers be among the first to receive COVID-19 vaccines.

Two slain soldiers get justice, says commander

From the Visayan Daily Star (Sep 20, 2021): Two slain soldiers get justice, says commander (BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN)

Nilda Natan Bertulano*

Justice has been served on two Army soldiers killed by New People’s Army rebels on April 3 in Brgy. Yao-Yao, Cauayan, Negros Occidental, following the capture and deaths, respectively, of some of their leaders in recent gunbattle in Ilog, Negros Occidental, Lt. Col. Erwin Cariño, 79th Infantry Battalion commander, said.

Cariño said that the group of Nilda Natan Bertulano, who is the secretary of the Komiteng Rehiyonal- Negros/Cebu/Bohol/Siquijor, was behind the ambush of two Army soldiers, who were engaged in Community Support Program activities of 79IB in the barangay.

Bertulano, Joebel Mabayag, alias Ka Pandoy and Ka Christian, were captured during an encounter with troopers of the 6th Special Action Battalion of the PNP SAF, Regional Mobile Force Battalion, 62nd Provincial Mobile Force Company and 15th Infantry Battalion in Sitio Balik-Balik, Brgy. Tabu, Ilog, on September 14.

The gunbattle between the group of Bertulano and government troopers also led to the death of four rebels and recovery of four high-powered firearms and explosives, among other war materials.

The Negros Island Regional Operational Command of the New People’s Army issued a statement on September 17 expressing its highest tribute to four of their comrades who died in the Ilog encounter.

Juanito Magbanua, spokesperson of the NPA Apolinario Gatmaitan Command, identified their four slain comrades as Cheene “Ka Nikki” Dacalos, 30, Jeren “Ka Alvin” Vargas, 24, Jonard “Ka George” Alvior, and a certain Ka Bobong.

Magbanua said that Vargas, of Brgy. Canlusong, EB Magalona, was a platoon leader of the NPA’s Armando Sumayang, Jr. Command, where Dacalos, of Minglanilla, Cebu, served as the group political instructor.

1Lt. Wynn Sandag, 15th Infantry Battalion Civil Military Operations officer, revealed yesterday that the husband of Dacalos and father of Vargas, are also members of the South West Front.

Magbanua described their four comrades as revolutionary martyrs, who gave their best to advance the revolutionary aspirations of the people to achieve national liberation and democracy.

Sandag said that the cadaver of Vargas and two other slain rebels were already claimed by their respective families, except for Dacalos, who was a reported as a graduate of UP- Cebu.

PLt. Col. Ryan Manongdo, 6SAB commander, said he believes that they were able to engage in gunbattle the main force of the South West Front led by Bertulano, who has a pending arrest warrant for attempted murder, issued by Kabankalan Regional Trial Court Judge Rodney Magbanua.

Cariño claimed that the successful joint operation marks the downfall of the KR-NCBS South West Front, as deaths and capture of its key leaders would greatly contribute in the defeat of the NPA in southern Negros.

‘Loved by people, feared by enemy’

From the Visayan Daily Star (Sep 20, 2021): ‘Loved by people, feared by enemy’ (BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN)

Loved by the people, feared by enemy.

This is the mantra of Maj. Gen. Benedict Arevalo that he will apply in peace and development campaign in Western and Central Visayas, upon assuming command of the Army’s 3rd Infantry Division on September 21.

Arevalo said it is the same mantra that he had applied in Negros Island, while he was still the commander of the 303rd Infantry Brigade, that also led to the capture of then Negros rebel chieftain Frank Fernandez and his wife, Cleofe, due to the cooperation of the Negrenses, among his other marked achievements.

It will be business as usual for us, such as the conduct of relentless operations against the New People’s Army remnants, linkages with local governments and national agencies in the conduct of Community Support Program activities, and other stakeholder engagements, among others, Arevalo added.

With the onset of elections, Arevalo said they want to put further pressure on the NPA so they cannot terrorize candidates and people in rural communities.

Army chief Maj. Gen. Andres Centino will preside over the 3ID change of command between Brig. Gen. Noel Baluyan and Arevalo through a telethon.

Arevalo said that he will also give priority to boosting the morale and welfare of 3rd Infantry Division personnel, with logistics forwarded to the field units.

As 3ID commander, Arevalo will supervise three Army infantry brigades in Regions 6 and 7.

The 3ID headquarters is only to give order and command, and not to be served by subordinate units, he stressed.

Baluyan is sliding down to his previous assignment as Assistant Division Commander, after serving as 3ID commander in acting capacity, following the retirement of Maj. Gen. Eric Vinoya from the military service on September 6.

Brig. Gen. Gabriel Viray, assistant to AFP deputy chief of staff for Civil Military Operations, is expected to replace Arevalo, pending announcement of his successor.

The 3ID spokesperson, Maj. Cenon Pancito III, has been also reassigned to the AFP general headquarters as commander of the Media Civil Affairs Group, station manager of AFP radio DWDD and a host to UNTV television program.

Suspected NPA rebels gun down ex-comrade

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 19, 2021): Suspected NPA rebels gun down ex-comrade (By Alexander Lopez)

Tandag City (Google map)

A farmer who abandoned the New People’s Army (NPA) 10 years ago was gunned down by his suspected former comrades in a remote area in Tandag City on Saturday.

The Surigao del Sur Police Provincial Office (SDSPPO) identified the victim as Belmer Sikoti Andaya, alias Oloy, 34, a resident of Purok Upper in Barangay Maitom.

“The Tandag City Police Station received a phone call on Saturday at around 11:15 a.m. on a shooting incident in Purok Upper,” the SDSPPO said in its report on Sunday.

According to the initial investigation, the victim’s wife, Jovelyn Ojao Andaya, told investigators that Andaya left their house past 6 a.m. on Saturday to check their abaca farm situated in the vicinity of Purok Upper.

At around 8 a.m., Jovelyn said her husband’s father, Besmar, received information from a concerned neighbor on the shooting.

“The father went immediately to his son’s abaca farm and found the body covered with banana leaves,” the SDSPPO report said.

Police said the victim's wife suspects NPA rebels belonging to Guerrilla Front 30, North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee as responsible for the killing of her husband.

The couple left the communist movement in 2011.

Responding police recovered three fired 5.56 mm cartridges and one live 5.56mm ammunition.

Investigators are still determining the firearm used in the killing of the victim, the report added.

“Police personnel from Tandag City are still conducting an in-depth investigation to determine the motive of the killing and the identification of the suspect,” the SDSPPO said.

The Communist Party of the Philippines-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

DICT-10 offers digital literacy training to former rebels

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 19, 2021): DICT-10 offers digital literacy training to former rebels (By Nef Luczon)

Tech4Ed Center at Sangguniang Bayan Session Hall in Kiamba, Sarangani province (Photo courtesy of Kiamba-PIO)

As part of its contribution to the whole-of-government approach in curbing communist insurgency, the Department of Information and Communications Technology for Mindanao Cluster 2 (DICT-MC2) offered former rebels to enroll in its digital literacy programs.

DICT will implement the Technology Empowerment for Education, Employment, Entrepreneurship, and Economic Development (Tech4ED) to empower communities and help end the local communist armed conflict, according to Officer-in-charge-Regional Director Sittie Rahma Alawi during the CORDS 10 (Cabinet Officer for Regional Development and Security-10) podcast on Saturday.

The project will provide ICT (information and communications technology) services to unserved and underserved communities, where the cluster has already established 219 Tech4ED centers and have conducted a series of digital literacy training.

"We concluded a digital literacy training and trained a total of 37 rebel returnees under the 29th Infantry Matatag in Cabadbaran City. Another plan that we have before this year ends is to conduct the same digital literacy training in Munai, Lanao del Norte in Camp Northwestern Mindanao Front," Alawi said during the podcast hosted by Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar, who is also the CORDS for Region 10.

DICT-MC2 will include government workers, students, teachers, and non-teaching staff of schools and institutions in its digital education campaign.

Alawi also shared that the DICT Vaccination Administration System (DIVAS) is already being implemented under the Vaccination Immunization Management Systems.

DIVAS aims is to reduce the turnaround time for the bakuna (vaccine) centers to inoculate citizens and also to help in their end-of-day report for a seamless procedure for all the vaccinees.

The agency is likewise a part of DigitalJobs.Ph that helps the freelancing community. To date, DICT-10 has trained 271 freelancers.

Army shares Covid-19 jabs with former, captured rebels

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 19, 2021): Army shares Covid-19 jabs with former, captured rebels (By Nef Luczon)

INOCULATION. A former communist rebel receives his first shot of the Covid-19 vaccine in Butuan City in this undated photo. Maj. Gen. Romeo Brawner, commander of the Army 4th Infantry Division, said in a statement on Sunday (Sept. 18, 2021) that they will share their vaccines with rebels who will avail of the government's amnesty programs. (Photo courtesy of 4ID)

Vaccination against the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) will be among the benefits that members of communist terrorist groups (CTGs) can avail of once they turn their backs on the armed struggle.

The Army's 4th Infantry Division (4ID) will include surrenderers in its vaccine allocation should they decide to surrender.

In a statement on Sunday, Maj. Gen. Romeo Brawner Jr. said the 4ID will facilitate the inoculation of former rebels.

“True to our promise, we have coordinated with LGU (local government units) health offices to accommodate CTG members and leaders for vaccination,” he stated.

The 4ID received more than 20,000 doses of various brands of Covid-19 from LGUs where their units are based.

“These can be shared with CPP-NPA-NDF (Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front) members who will lay down their arms and choose to be safe against the Covid-19," Brawner said.

“Let this pandemic become a blessing in disguise where we can unite and begin the phase of totally ending the insurgency problem and tread the path of peace and development,” he added.

In coordination with LGUs, the 4ID line battalions have been assisting in the vaccination of former fighters and leaders who were captured during the recent Bukidnon clashes.

Seven of the 14 captured guerrillas were found positive for Covid-19, including one of the four fatalities.

Another rebel who tested positive was Adelaida Magpatok, the CTG consultant and CPP-NPA-NDF Central Committee member who was arrested in Quezon, Bukidnon on Sept. 15.

On Sept. 16, the 88th Infantry Battalion (88IB) and the town of Maramag in Bukidnon administered Sinovac and AstraZeneca jabs on 11 former rebels and six of their dependents.

The following day, the 58IB and Claveria, Misamis Oriental inoculated 15 former rebels from different units of North Central Mindanao Regional Committee with Moderna and Sinovac vaccines.

Meanwhile, the 75IB based in San Miguel, Surigao del Sur held vaccination for seven former members of the North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee while the 23IB in Buenavista, Agsuan del Norte gave jabs to six ex-rebels and four dependents on Sept. 15.

Jimwel Salazar, the captured commanding officer of Sub Regional Sentro De Gravidad Westland, received his first dose on Sinovac on Sept. 17.

The Philippines' Anti-Terrorism Council has designated the CPP, NPA, and NDF as a terrorist groups.

The European Union, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines also listed the CPP-NPA as a terrorist organization.

Eleazar orders mahunt vs. Maguindanao blast suspects

From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 19, 2021): Eleazar orders mahunt vs. Maguindanao blast suspects (By Christopher Lloyd Caliwan)

POST-BLAST SCENARIO. Army and police bomb experts conduct an investigation at the Datu Piang covered court on Sept. 18, 2021. The suspected grenade, hurled by still unidentified suspects injured eight spectators of a volleyball game. (Photo courtesy of 6ID)

Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Guillermo Eleazar on Sunday directed the Police Regional Office Bangsamoro Autonomous Region (PRO BAR) to conduct a thorough investigation into the explosion in Maguindanao that left eight people injured.

Eleazar also instructed the local police to coordinate with the military in identifying and arresting the perpetrators of the attack.

“Inatasan ko na ang Regional Director PRO BAR na makipagtulungan sa local military forces, hindi lamang sa pagsasagawa ng manhunt sa mga taong responsible dito, kundi pati na rin sa pagpapa-igting ng seguridad sa Maguindanao at ilang mga lugar kung saan maaring mangyari ang ganitong klaseng karahasan (I have instructed the Regional Director PRO BAR to cooperate with the local military forces, not only in conducting a manhunt on the people responsible for it, but also in tightening security in Maguindanao and some areas where the this kind of violence might happen also),” Eleazar said in a video message.

Reports reaching the PNP chief’s office indicated that the blast happened while a volleyball game was ongoing in a covered court in Datu Piang town center on Saturday afternoon.

No one was reported killed in the incident.

Authorities are still validating if the suspects had used a phone-triggered improvised explosive device in the attack.

Eleazar, meanwhile, called on residents in the area to immediately report to authorities if they noticed any actions that could pose threats in the community, noting that information from citizens has been helpful for the police in preventing atrocities.

Probe into death of delivery rider

Eleazar also ordered the Manila Police District (MPD) to investigate the death of a delivery rider in Tondo, Manila in what appeared to be an accidental firing involving a police officer.

He made the directive after relatives of Jason Capistrano claimed that a bullet that killed the victim came from the service firearm of Cpl. Oliver Ferrer, who is assigned at the MPD Station 1.

“I have already asked the Director, MPD about this case and the initial investigation revealed that the policeman and the victim are friends and it was a case of irresponsible gun ownership. The policeman was already disarmed, detained, and a case of homicide was already referred to the Prosecutor's Office aside from the administrative charges that would be filed against him,” Eleazar said.

Based on the initial report, Ferrer went to Barangay 183, Zone 16 to visit chairman Joseph Lipasana in Gagalangin. While they were waiting outside the barangay hall, Ferrer allegedly toyed with his firearm in front of the victim. It went off and hit Capistrano.

Capistrano was rushed to Chinese General Hospital but was declared dead on arrival.

MPD chief Brig. Gen. Leo Francisco said Ferrer had surrendered and he was already disarmed.

Eleazar expressed sympathy to the family of Capistrano, assuring them that the incident would be thoroughly probed.

On Saturday, Eleazar ordered the regular conduct of gun safety and marksmanship training for all PNP uniformed personnel, especially those assigned on the ground.

He explained that as the PNP is promoting and requiring responsible gun ownership for civilians who want to own firearms, the standard on gun safety and shooting skills must be high for police personnel.

“I have already issued a directive for the regular conduct of gun safety and marksmanship training purposely to avoid cases like this,” he said. “Maging aral sana ito sa mga nagmamay-ari ng baril, lalo na sa mga kapulisan, na hindi laruan at kailanman ay hindi dapat ipagmayabang ang pagkakaroon ng baril (May this be a lesson to gun owners, especially to the police, that they are not toys and should never brag about having a gun).”