“The New People’s Army has promised us a peaceful life and protection from abusive soldiers; however, it was the other way around. They were abusive,” said alias Carol, one of the four communist terrorists who surrendered to military troops in Zamboanga Sibugay on July 10.
Carol and three other rebels yielded to soldiers of 44th Infantry Battalion in Barangay Balagon, Siay at 4pm on Wednesday.
“They were no longer satisfied by the promises and lies of the NPA in their community,” said Lt. Col. Don Templonuevo, 44th Infantry Battalion Commander.
Said rebels also yielded a homemade shotgun, three handguns, and ammunition.
“We urge other NPA militias and communist terrorists in our area of operations to cooperate and surrender. We also encourage the local chief executives to engage and lead the localized peace talks among communist terrorists to address the issues and problems peacefully,” said Brig. Gen. Bagnus Gaerlan, 102nd Infantry Brigade Commander.
“Rest assured that we will collaborate and support the activities of the local government in addressing peace and security in the area,” added Gaerlan.
Meanwhile, Maj. Gen. Roberto Ancan, Joint Task Force Zampelan Commander, commended the efforts of the troops that led to the surrender of said rebels.
“We encourage other communist terrorists to surrender with their firearms, return to the fold of the law, and benefit from the Enhanced Local Integration Program of the government”, said Ancan.
“With the promulgation of Executive Order No. 70, we believe that the E-CLIP will be enhanced to benefit more rebels in our country. Convergence and synchronization of plans, programs, and projects among the government agencies is vital to end decades-long insurgency that only brought misery to our country,” he added.
Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, commander of Western Mindanao Command, said, “Our current thrust to end insurgency is sustained by our commitment to involve the different sectors and the people, through the whole-of-nation approach, and by our efforts and sincerity to aid rebels who wish to cross the line and join the government’s fight against the common adversary.”
“With this in mind, we continue to welcome those who fell prey and became victims of the communist terrorists’ deception. We are here to help and provide you resolutions,” he added.