By Francis Wakefield
The Army’s 7th Infantry (Kaugnay) Division together with the Pangasinan Police Provincial Office has recommended the declaration of Pangasinan Province as Insurgency Free.
The recommendation to declare Pangasinan free from Communist New People’s Army Terrorists (CNT) and Local Terrorist Groups’ (LTGs) was held
at Agtarap Hall, Pangasinan Provincial Police Office, Lingayen, Pangasinan at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday.
A Joint Recommendation between the 702nd Infantry (Defender) Brigade, 7th ID and Pangasinan Police Provincial Office was signed endorsing Pangasinan to be declared as “Insurgency Free”.
An Insurgency Free Province means that there is already a very favorable peace and order conditions which were verified by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Philippine National Police (PNP) deployed in the area. The declaration of the province as insurgency free is necessary to further spur its unhampered march towards progress while keeping the commitment of the Philippine Army and PNP to continue its effort in sustaining and preserving the peace and order in the province.
A Joint Declaration on the Clearing of the Province of Pangasinan was previously signed by the former Commander of the 7th ID, Maj. Gen. Irineo C. Espino (Ret) and the former Governor of Pangasinan, Hon. Amado T. Espino Jr. on July 12, 2010.
The pronouncement of Pangasinan as “Cleared” from the Local Terrorist Groups’ (LTGs) and the Communist NPA Terrorists’ (CNTs) affectation and influence is a requirement prior to the declaration of Pangasinan as Insurgency Free.
Army 7th Infantry (Kaugnay) Division, chief Major General Felimon T. Santos Jr., conveyed his compliments to the 702nd Brigade and other 7th ID units to its recent accomplishment.
He said that the declaration of Insurgency Free means that the people in Pangasinan supports the government’s thrust against the LTGs and CNTs.
He added that all of 7th ID units are utterly committed in performing their duty so that all of the provinces within the division’s area of responsibility will be declared “Insurgency Free”.
Meanwhile, Brigadier General Henry A. Robinson Jr., the Commander of 702nd Infantry (Defender) Brigade, said that they will not let their guards down regardless of the declaration of Pangasinan as Insurgency Free.
He said that the recommendation for the declaration is the result of the undertakings of 7th ID units assigned in the area. He further said that 702nd Brigade is committed to keep the peace and order of Pangasinan.
It is noteworthy to mention that the provinces of Bataan, La Union and Pampanga were already declared Insurgency Free.