A MEMBER of the New People’s Army (NPA) surrendered 19 firearms to the authorities after walking for 37 hours from his hideout in the mountainous areas of Basey town to his home in Calbiga, Samar.

The Philippine Army in the region identified the rebel returnee as alias Aljur, who belonged to the Bugsok Platoon of the Eastern Visayas Regional Party Committee.

The firearms include four M14 rifles, six M16 rifles, four AK47 rifles, one shotgun, one KG9, one .38 caliber revolver, one M79 GL, one .45 caliber pistol, and 14 magazines of AK47.

Aljur voluntarily surrendered to Army's 46th Infantry Battalion in Samar on November 19, 2022, with a .45 caliber pistol, while the 18 other firearms were retrieved the following day, according to the army.

In a statement, regional army spokesperson Captain Ryan Layug said Aljur’s surrender was also through the initiative of the 801st Infantry Brigade after they launched a dialogue with former rebel members, along with parents and relatives of active rebel members, in Calbiga town on November 8.

According to the army, one of the attendees during the dialogue was the mother of Aljur, “who did not think twice telling his son to immediately surrender to soldiers as the government will gladly welcome his return to the folds of law.”

"I congratulate both units for their effort to reach out to parents and relatives. Ang pangyayaring ito ang nagpapatunay na ang local peace engagement ay mas epektibo upang masolusyunan itong local communist armed conflict,” said Major General Camilo Ligayo, army commander in the region. (SunStar Philippines)