AN ALLEGED high-ranking official of the New People's Army (NPA) and seven other members of the Militia ng Bayan have reportedly surrendered to police in Bukidnon.
Police Lieutenant Colonel Mardy Hortillosa, Police Regional Office (PRO)-Northern Mindanao spokesperson, said the high-ranking NPA member is the secretary of Guerilla Front 89 with areas of operation in Malaybalay, Cabanglasan, San Fernando, and Impasug-ong, all in Bukidnon.
The seven former rebels turned themselves in through the Bukidnon Police Provincial Office, along with one caliber 30 sniper rifle with a magazine loaded with 10 ammunition, one homemade revolver type, caliber 5.56 with six live ammunition, two caliber .38 revolvers with five ammunition, and three homemade shotguns with eight 12 gauge ammunition.
The youngest rebel surrenderer is a 28-year-old, while the oldest is a 55-year-old.
"They decided to surrender for the reasons that they can't take anymore the hardship, tiredness, hunger, security of their life, and unfulfilled promises they experienced when they were supporting the NPA," Hortillosa said.
"Sa kadugay nako'g uban sa ilaha sir, hangtod karon nisamot pa man ang kalisod sa among panginabuhi. Sa una magtanom mi. Naa koy kapehan, gamay ug abaka. Mabuhi naman intawon mi," a former rebel was quoted as saying.
Hortillosa said the Militia ng Bayan is in-charge of the procurement of the logistics needs of the NPA and delivers it to them. They also serve as a lookout and informant of the NPA on the movement of security forces, especially in combat patrols and operations.
Hortillosa said they can also augment the NPA forces, if necessary.
The former rebels also told police they were promised by the NPA a monthly salary of P10,000, food allowance to their family, and P50,000 project for their sitio.
All of them are now under the custody of PRO-Northern Mindanao.
Police Brigadier General Rafael Santiago Jr., PRO regional director, vowed to assist the former rebels in getting the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program.