CAMP BADO DANGWA, LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – The intensified operations of the PNP PRO-Cordillera and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has resulted in the voluntary surrender of 100 members of the New People’s Army (NPA) active members and supporters for the period of January to September of this year despite the pressure brought about by the COVID 19 pandemic.
Of the recorded 100 surrenderees, 55 are members of the Militia ng Bayan while the 45 others were CNT members. Most of them were supporters of the Kilusang Larangang Guerilla (KLG) under the group of MARCO that operates in the provinces of Mt Province, the town of Alfonso Lista and Aguinaldo in Ifugao and KLG North Abra that operates in the municipalities of Boliney, Daguioman, Bucloc, Sallapadan, Malibcong, Lacub, Tineg and Baay-Licuan.
This year’s number of surrenderees is higher as compared to the past 2 years, where only 69 was in 2018 and made a slight increase in 2019 with 72 surrenderees.
The number of CNT surrenderees continue to increase after realizing that they have been fighting without cause but have only been causing agitation to their families and communities. Most of their confession revealed that they continuous experienced hardships, hunger, exhaustion, and false promises and various deception while with the NPA terrorist group.
Another factor is the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) of the government which was already availed by many of their comrades who are now enjoying just and lasting peace in the community. Also, their return to the government is attributed to the massive information campaign and tactical operations conducted by the operating elements of PROCOR and AFP.
This successful accomplishment is remarkable because this greatly shows the continuous weakening of the CNT group through the loss of support from communities.
PROCOR Regional Director PBGen Rwin SA Pagkalinawan lauded the efforts of all operatives as well as the local government units (LGUs) in the region for the surrender of these CNTs and Militia ng Bayan members. He also warmly welcomed the surrenderees assuring them of their wise choice and further appealed to the others who are still in the mountains to come down and legitimize their cause. “This could not have been possible without the united efforts and support of the LGUs, the Indigenous People (IP) communities and peace partner stakeholders under the Task Force in Ending Local Communist Armed Conflict (TF-ELCAC)”, General Pagkalinawan said.
Before long, destruction of turned-in firearms under the normalization program for the Cordillera Bodong Administration-Cordillera Peoples Liberation Army (CBA-CPLA) will soon be conducted here at PROCOR, Camp Major Bado Dangwa, La Trinidad, Benguet. (PROCOR RPIO)