SIX New People’s Army (NPA) rebels have surrendered to military authorities in the province of Zamboanga del Sur, officials said Saturday, August 3.
Lieutenant Colonel Marlowe Patria, Army’s 53rd Infantry Battalion commander, said the six NPA led by a certain Ka Diego surrendered to them Friday in Pagadian City, the capital of Zamboanga del Sur.
Patria said the group of Ka Diego, who operated in the hinterlands of Lison Valley, Pagadian City.
Ka Diego had been with the NPA for three years while the rest at least three months. The turned over four handguns and ammunition.
“The surrender of the six CNTs (Communist NPA Terrorists) is a product of the fruitful information dissemination that encouraged them to return to folds of the law,” Patria said.
The NPA surrenderers were presented to Zamboanga del Sur Governor Victor Yu, first district Representative Divina Grace Yu, second district Representative Leonardo Babasa, Jr. and Provincial Board Member John Regala at the provincial capitol where they took a pledge of allegiance.
Governor Yu said that insurgency is one factor that hinders the development of the province of Zamboanga del Sur.
“We need peace. That is why I am happy to see them. Later they will realize that our government is looking after their welfare especially that the call of President Duterte is to eradicate insurgency,” Yu said.
He also emphasized that the provincial government in coordination with other national agencies have laid down programs so these people can realize that “we are stretching our hand for their common good.”
Meanwhile, Brigadier General Bagnus Gaerlan, Jr., Army’s 102nd Infantry Brigade commander, said they are gaining grounds “and our relentless military operation in the province pressured them to surrender.”
“With their surrender, we hoped that they can encouraged some of their comrades to follow their path for them to benefit the programs of the government”, Gaerlan said.
Major General Roberto Ancan, Army’s 1st Infantry Division commander, lauded the troops and the local government for the successful surrender of the NPA rebels.
Ancan assured they will work together with all the government instrumentality and stakeholders in order to defeat the NPA and to attain just and sustainable peace in Western Mindanao. (SunStar Philippines)