THE top official of the Army’s 4th Infantry "Diamond" Division (4ID) is confident that the division will achieve its targeted accomplishments before the year ends and bring peace and stability in its area of responsibility (AOR).
Major General Benjamin Madrigal Jr., 4ID commander, said he expects to see better results for their efforts to clear Northern Mindanao and Caraga of communist insurgents belonging to the North Eastern Mindanao Regional Committee not later than 2016.
“We are optimistic that with our continued collaboration with the civil authorities we will be able to achieve our mission and secure our AOR from all forms of threats,” Madrigal said.
Madrigal said that their efforts in maintaining the people’s trust and confidence and bring the government closer to the communities have so far resulted to the declaration of 142 villages, out of 200 target villages in 4ID AOR, sustainable and ready for further development.
“This means that obstacles to attaining a peaceful environment have been degraded, particularly the insurgency problem, criminality, and proliferation of illegal drugs that have affected almost all levels of our society.” Madrigal said.
On the normalization process, out of the eight provinces in Northern Mindanao and Caraga, Bukidnon remains to be declared as peaceful and ready for further development owing to the ongoing internal peace and security plan or the Bayanihan program of the military in clearing areas of threats that hampered development.
The 4ID has so far supported 406 operations with law enforcement agencies focused on the campaign against illegal drugs.
The operations have so far uprooted and confiscated 96,100 fully grown marijuana plants and 848 grams of shabu with an estimated value amounting to P28 million.
Arrested were 11 drug personalities, while 562 drug dependents and pushers have voluntarily submitted themselves to authorities.
Madrigal said that soldiers belonging to his command were not spared in the anti-illegal drugs campaign where drug testing was conducted on the 988 soldiers.
The results have caused the dismissal of 11 soldiers belonging to the citizens arm forces geographical unit or Cafgu and enlisted personnel.
“In line with the current thrust of President Rodrigo Duterte, the 4ID is proud to say that we are the first unit of the Philippine Army that has established a drug rehabilitation center located at the 401st Infantry Brigade in Prosperidad, Agusan del Sur,” Madrigal said.