By Francis Wakefield
The Armed Forces of the Philippines-Eastern Mindanao Command (AFP-EastMinCom) commended the role of the communities in facilitating the recent surrender of two New People’s Army (NPA) regulars and 12 Militiang Bayan who yielded to the government in two different instances in Eastern Mindanao on Tuesday.
“We express our admiration to the communities who facilitated the surrender of our deceived and lost brothers. This manifests their care to their people and their desire for a peaceful environment,” Eastern Mindanao Command Commander Maj. Gen. Felimon Santos Jr., said.
“We hope that the NPAs will get this message of the communities on the worthlessness of the armed struggle,” he added.
In a report submitted by Lt. Col. Oscar Balignasay, the Commander of the Army’s 25th Infantry Battalion, a certain alias Bulao, a member of the NPA group in Monkayo, Compostela Valley Province, surrendered last Tuesday after a series of interventions of the community therein.
Along with alias Bulao are 12 members of the Militiang Bayan (“civilians by day NPA by night”) who are usually responsible for laying and detonating landmine, sniping during NPA atrocities.
They voluntary surrendered an M16 Rifle, a Garand Rifle, a Calibre 22 Magnum Rifle, an IED (improvised explosive device) weighing 16Kgs, six sacks of rice, canned goods, medical supplies and paraphernalia, 12 pieces of Bandoliers, jungle hammocks, personal belongings and subversive documents that are of high intelligence value.
Further, the said surrenderees assisted troops in the capture of 190 pieces of blasting caps, eight pieces of blasting caps with an attached wire and more or less 40Kgs of Ammonium Nitrate along So Nang, Brgy. Mt. Diwata, Monkayo, Compostela Valley Province.
Meanwhile, a Squad Leader of NPAs roaming in the mountainous boundary of Arakan, North Cotabato, and Kitaotao, Bukidnon surrendered to the troops of the 88th Infantry Battalion in New Kabalantian, Kitaotao Bukidnon in the morning of January 29, 2019.
The surrenderees underwent custodial debriefing with concerned military units. They will be subsequently subjected to needs assessment interview by concerned government agency in preparation for their enrollment with the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program which prepares them in their return to the mainstream society.