A sub-leader of the Daesh-inspired Maute fighters surrendered yesterday to military troops in Lanao del Sur.
The local government of Lumba Bayabao facilitated the surrender of Aloyodan Bantak, alias Ibrahim Bantak, according to Lieutenant Colonel Edgar Allan Villanueva, the 49th Infantry Battalion Commander.
“Bantak is involved in the November 2016 Butig Siege. He is the recruiter of the Abu Dar group,” added Lieutenant Colonel Villanueva.
Bantak also yielded a caliber 5.56mm sniper rifle, two magazines of grenade launchers, and ammunition.
On February 18, three Daesh-inspired-Maute remnants under sub-leader Mubarak Manalo, also surrendered to the 49IB in the municipality of Sultan Dumalondong, Lanao del Sur.
“While we are supporting the recovery, reconstruction, and rehabilitation of Marawi, our efforts against the Maute terrorists will be continuous in order to achieve a peaceful and progressive community,” said Colonel Romeo Brawner, the 103rd Infantry Brigade Commander.
Meanwhile, Brigadier General Roberto Ancan, the Joint Task Force ZamPeLan Commander, commended the efforts of the troops of the 49th IB and the LGU of Lumba Bayabao.
“Our campaign against terrorists will be relentless and we will take advantage of their weakened leadership and capabilities in order to attain a just and lasting peace in our area of operation,” concluded Ancan.
Lieutenant General Arnel Dela Vega, the commander of the Western Mindanao Command, said the series of capitulations is a welcoming development on the current thrust of the armed forces to purge Western and Central Mindanao of insurgency.
“With the extension of Martial Law in Mindanao, internal security operations will be strengthened and consultations with those at stake will be initiated to address decades-long insurgency in the area,” he added.
“While we maintain our stance, we gladly welcome those who wish to lay down their arms and return to the fold of the law,” added Lieutenant General Dela Vega.