Two officers of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) in central Negros voluntarily surrendered to government troops yesterday afternoon.
The former rebels were identified as “Ka Dodong” and “Ka Lara”, political instructor and medical officer, respectively, of the NPA’s SDG Platoon, Central Negros 2, according to the report of the Philippine Army’s 62nd Infantry Battalion based in Barangay Libas, Isabela town in Negros Occidental.
Lt. Col. Melvin Flores, commander of 62IB, said the couple decided to surrender when they learned about the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) and also because of their desire to live a peaceful life with their child.
“We assure the rebel returnees that they will be given financial support, legal assistance, and livelihood package as part of their E-CLIP benefits,” Flores said.
The two surrendered to the troops in the presence of Flores and Capt. Joseph Partidas, chief of the Isabela Municipal Police Station, at the 62IB headquarters.
During his surrender, “Ka Dodong” also turned over a .45-caliber pistol, two magazines, and 25 serviceable ammunition.
The 62IB said in its report that the couple related the hardships, abuses, and corruption they experienced inside the NPA organization that prompted them to surrender.
“What we have gained is the gradual result of the whole-of-nation approach of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict. Let us continue to work hand-in-hand to successfully end the insurgency and to achieve an inclusive and lasting peace here in Negros Island,” Flores added.
Last month, two former NPA cadres of the South West Front in Negros Island also voluntarily surrendered to the Army’s 15IB based Barangay Tiling in Cauayan, Negros Occidental.
They were identified as Hermosilla “Aya” Villamor, 45, member of Front Committee; and Teody “Koko” Manorte, 27, squad leader of SYP Platoon.
The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.* ()