69 NPA members surrender in Bukidnon

MALAYBALAY CITY — About 69 militia ng bayan and mass base supporters of the New People’s Army (NPA) voluntarily surrendered to the government during a Community Support Program (CSP) Grand “Pulong-pulong”, held Thursday, September 19, at Barangay Kibalabag, this city.

Fourteen (14) of the surrenderees are militia ng bayan members bringing with them five firearms, one homemade shotgun, one cal. 38 revolver, one cal. 22 revolver, one cal. 357 revolver magnum and subversive documents.

The other 55 are supporters from Sangay sa Partido sa Lokalidad (7), Pambansang Kilusan ng Magbubukid (18), Malayang Kilusan ng Bagong Kababaihan (13) and Kabataang Makabayan (17).

Accordingly, the members were deceived by NPA organizers using issues arousing, organizing and mobilizing them to go against the Philippine Government. They were infiltrated by the NPA in 2010 with the promise that they will help in peace and development. However, it only turned to chaos and the NPA organizers sow terror in the community.

Enlightened by the truth, they decided to withdraw their membership and support to Guerellia Front 89, North Central Mindanao Regional Command.

The surrenderees took their oath of allegiance to the government during the grand “pulong-pulong” by signing in public the document “Withdrawal of Membership to the National Democratic Front.” It was witnessed by officials of city government of Malaybalay and representatives of the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples, Technical Education and Skills Development Authority, Department of Health, City Social Welfare and Development, Department of Environment and Natural Resources- Community Environment and Natural Resources Office,, and other local agencies including stakeholders of Barangay Kibalabag.

Gino Benito, Kalihim of Pambansang Kilusan ng Magbubukid, said in his testimony, “tinuod na miyembro misa organisasyon pero wala mi mahimo kay pobre ra mi unya gisaaran mi ug kaayuhan sa NPA, mao nag apil mi pero bakak man diay ang ilaha; pamaagi ra nila tu aron makarekruit (it is true that we were members of the organization but we could not do something because we are poor, and the NPA promised us good that is why we joined them, but it was all lies, just their way to recruit).”

“Ni anhi mi sa inyong komunidad kauban ang uban nga Government Agencies aron mo tabang ug dili makig giyera aron ipasabot nga aduna tay gobyerno ug National Agencies nga andam mo tubag sa atong mga klase klase nga pangutana (We are here in your community together with other government agencies to help not fight, to show that we have national agencies that are ready to answer to your various questions),” Lieutenant Colonel Ronald Illana, Commanding Officer of the 8th Infantry “Dependable” Battalion said in his speech.

The surrenderees will be assisted by the 8th Infantry Battalion and the city government of Malaybalay to ensure their safety and support from the government

Roberto Flores, the executive assistant to the Mayor of Malaybalay City, underscored in his statement that the army’s CSP is a good approach to end local insurgency. He said the city government is willing to participate and adopt the approach.