TWENTY-ONE former New People’s Army (NPA) rebels have received on Monday, March 20, 2023, a total of P1,265,000 from the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-Clip) facilitated by the Davao Del Sur's Provincial Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (PTF-Elcac).

Lieutenant Colonel Ezra Balagtey, 39th Infantry Battalion commander, said 19 of the 21 received P65,000 livelihood assistance while two got P15,000 as immediate assistance.

Prior to receiving livelihood assistance, the 19 beneficiaries have undergone additional orientation, aside from the training they have undergone during the three-month Tupad Pangako Program, a preparation and deradicalization intervention for their reintegration to their respective communities and families.

One of the livelihood aid recipients, Alyas Jane, expressed her optimism during the activity that thy can become productive citizens.

Jane is a former medical officer of the Guerilla Front 51 of the NPA’s Southern Mindanao Regional Committee.

“This will be of great help for us to restart our lives and become responsible citizens of this country. I know that the process will be hard, but with the help of the government, I’m sure all of us can really achieve peaceful lives,” Jane said.

Balagtey is thankful for the continuing effort of partner agencies and the provincial government of Davao del Sur “to mainstream these former rebels.”

“Indeed, it is a manifestation of the genuine concern of the government to address the cause of insurgency,” Balagtey added. (SunStar Zamboanga)