THE Army's 8th Infantry Battalion (8IB) reported Tuesday, August 13, that a child (believed to be a rebel combatant) and two more communist guerillas have abandoned the armed struggle and surrendered in Impasug-ong, Bukidnon, over the weekend.
The three former members of the New People's Army (NPA) were only identified as alias "Marben," 17, a member of Militia Ng Bayan; his brother, alias "Rodel," 19, a former regular member of company Malayag, Sub-Regional Committee 2, North Central Mindanao Regional Command (NCMRC); and alias "Ryan," 26, a former supply officer of the Sentro De Grabidad Dario of NCMRC.
The three brought with them one caliber .45 with four bullets, a Garrand loaded with three bullets, and a Carbine with 20 ammunition.
This was the effort of the Indigenous People (IP) who became a member of the Philippine Army, the military said.
Lieutenant Colonel Ronald Illana, 8IB commander, welcomed the three and acknowledged the effort of the IP soldier.
"I appreciate the effort of our IP soldiers for negotiating our surrenders. The Philippine Army is expecting more surrenders from you. Again, to the remaining members of the SRC1 and SRC2 of NCMRC, come down and be with your family. We will help you," he said.
Lieutenant General Felimon Santos Jr., commander of the Eastern Mindanao Command who visited the dependable troopers, also gave cash gifts to the three former rebels as a price for their surrender and strongly condemned the child exploitation of the terrorists.
“I could see my children in you. At a very young age, you were deceived by the CPP-NPA terrorists. They used your inability to read and write as an advantage. They have been using you without you knowing the real life in the mountains. It breaks my heart to see you suffer this misery,” he said.