MALAYBALAY City--Two top leaders of the New People's Army (NPA), and five others, surrendered to the local officials of Valencia City in Bukidnon, the military said Thursday.
In a press statement, Capt. Ryan D. Layug, 403rd Civil Militay Officer, identied the rebel returnees as Ryselyn Q. Pardo, aka Jamby; and her husband, Reynante Tumbalang, aka Jigger.
Layug identified the other five rebel returnees as Regine Pardo, Shairyl Pardo, Mark Jayzone Pardo, Angelito Tundag, and Roger Gonzales.
He said Jamby is the secretary of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army (CPP-NPA) Guerilla Front 6 (GF6) while Jigger is the commanding officer of GF6 operating in southern Bukidnon.
He said GF6 was the NPA political organization that radicalized and turned militants some residents in seven Bukidnon towns namely: Valencia City, san Fernando, Kitaotao, Maramag, don Carlos, dangcagan, and Quezon.
"We concede to government's CSP," said Jamby apparently referring to the intensified Community Support Program of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).
Jamby also said that the soldiers treat them well contrary to the statements of their senior cadres that they will be raped and tortured if they surrender.
In a statement, Major General Nemesio Gacal, commander of the 4th Infantry division, said: "Our war is not focused on winning battles through the barrel of guns, ours is a peaceful war involving communities in conflict affected areas."
Gacal added: "we together with local leaders and our constituents join hands and committed to battle land issues, poverty, and other problems through dialogue with the right people, organization and agency."
"we commend the 403rd Brigade and the 88th, and the local government unit of BUkidnon for winning the peaceful war," said Gacal.
“Nagpapasalamat po kami sa provincial government ng Bukidnon at sa City Government ng Valencia dahil sila ang naging bukas na pinto para sa pagbabagong buhay ng mga kapatid natin na naligaw ng landas," said BGen Edgardo De Leon, the Commander of 403rd Brigade covering the Provinces of Bukidnon, Misamis Oriental and Camiguin, to include Cagayan de Oro City.
De Leo said: "Ito ay isang patunay na mas epektibo ang local level na usaping pangkapayapaan, halos isang linggo lang ang negosasyon, nagbalik loob na sila. Ang national level peacetalks, nagumpisa nung 1986, hanggang ngayon wala pa ring kapayapaan sa ating bansa. Ito pong local integration program ay sang-ayon kagustuhan at utos ng ating Commander-in-Chief President Duterte at ito po ay nagtatagumpay. Nagpapasalamat din po kami sa tulong at inisyatiba ni Congressman Neil Roque at sya rin ay naging daan sa pagbabagong buhay ng mga rebelde.”
On one hand, Layug said the local government of Valencia City was key to the surrender of the couple.
He said the couple initially sought the help of City Councilor Saliezer A. Dejos and Valencia City Mayor Azucena Huervas.
The local officials of Valencia turned over the former rebels to Bukidnon Governor Jose Ma. zubiri, chair of the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (ECLIP) committee, during a press conference held at Valencia City on January 16.
Layug said the former rebels were formally turned over to the 88th Infantry Battalion and the 403rd Infantry Brigade fo enrollment into the enhanced comprehensive local integration program of the government.
He said the Provincial Social Welfare Development Office will determine the package of assistance that would suit the need of the former rebels which the military now calls "kauban sa kalinaw ug kalambuan."
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