THE Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in Davao Region, through its Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP), has released P320,000 cash assistance to 16 former New People’s Army (NPA) rebels in Davao del Sur.

Lieutenant Colonel Ezra Balagtey, 39th Infantry Battalion commander, said each of the 16 former NPA rebels received P20,000 cash assistance, the distribution of which was held Tuesday, November 29, at the Davao del Sur governor’s office.

The cash assistance was handed over to the identified recipients by Sheryl Tan, SLP focal person of DSWD-Davao Region, together with Geraldine Lano, Davao del Sur Provincial Social Welfare and Development director and Lawyer Herbert Gonzales, Davao del Sur

provincial administrator.

Balagtey said aside from the cash assistance, the recipients are also beneficiaries of the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-Clip) under the Task Force Balik Loob of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-Elcac).

He said they received various assistance within the E-Clip package.

Balagtey said the 16 former NPA rebels, who are under the Davao del Sur Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office, have surrendered in 2021 to the 39th Infantry Battalion.

They are also set to undergo deradicalization and mainstreaming intervention from the Davao del Sur provincial government through its Tupad Pangako Program. (SunStar Zamboanga)