NEGROS ORIENTAL – The Department of Industry (DTI)-Negros Oriental, in partnership with the 11th Infantry Battalion (IB) of the Philippine Army, distributed livelihood kits worth over P10,000 each to some 40 individuals identified as former members of the Militia Ng Bayan in Negros Oriental.
According to DTI-Negros Oriental Provincial Director Nimfa Virtucio, the livelihood kits were in-kind or in-cash under the DTI’s “Pangkabuhayan para sa pagBangon at Ginhawa (PBG)” program based on the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of Administrative Order (AO-10) for the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (ECLIP) and those covered under the government’s whole-of-nation approach to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (ELCAC).
Virtucio said that the beneficiaries may choose to avail of livelihood kits in-kind, or cash vouchers. The vouchers can be exchanged for sari-sari store goods in DTI-accredited grocery stores, while the livelihood kits in kind include agricultural inputs such as cattle, pigs, seeds, fertilizers, others.
As of July 18, Virtucio bared that the team has distributed 16 goats, nine sari-sari store vouchers, six cattle, and two piglets with feeds to the 40 PBG beneficiaries along with sugarcane stem cuttings and sacks of feeds and fertilizers.
The livelihood kits were distributed to the former Militia ng Bayan members in two batches; first batch was on July 9 in Zamboanguita town, and the other on July 18 at the 11th IB Headquarters in Salag, Siaton, Virtucio added.
According to 11th IB Commander LTC. Ramir Redosendo that Militia ng Bayan refers to those who have been indoctrinated and may or may not be directly involved in violent armed struggle but when organized, can provide mass support to alleged rebel groups.
“Ito na yung mga produkto ng mga effort natin. Kung iko-connect natin we have the Community Support Program last year. Na-identify natin iyong mga kapatid natin na gustong bumalik sa normal life of the society so ito na yun. Ito na yung produkto ng ELCAC,” Redosendo added.