CAMP PRESIDENT QUIRINO, Ilocos Sur – Two members of the New People’s Army (NPA) have surrendered to soldiers belonging to the 81st Infantry Battalion (82st IB) based in Barangay Bugbuga, Sta. Cruz, Ilocos Sur.
Lt. Col. Rodrigo A. Mariñas Jr., 82st IB commander, identified the NPA rebels as “Ka Eddie” and “Ka Andong”, both members of the Komiteng Larangan Gerilya South Ilocos Sur (KLG – SIS) of the NPA and residents of Sta. Cruz, Ilocos Sur.
Ka Eddie confessed during his custodial interview that he joined the terrorist group in December 2019, but he had to lie low in March this year.
Ka Andong, on the other hand, was with the terrorist group from 2000 to 2003, but has since gone inactive.
But despite their inactive status, they remained as trusted contacts of the NPA, and served as organizers and recruiters of the NPA in the province.
“The NPA rebels’ act of surrender to the authority is a manifestation of their renewed trust to the government. The army, together with stakeholders, are working hard together to encourage those who are still on the side of the enemy of the state to surrender and give themselves the chance to live a life in peace, especially that Christmas is coming,” Mariñas said.
Army’s 702nd Brigade Commander Brig. Gen. Audrey L. Pasia lauded the efforts of Sta. Cruz town Vice Mayor Virgilio Valle, Barangay Caparian Chairman Reymundo Bagano Jr., and Indigenous People’s Chieftain Constante Jaramilla, together with the Sta. Cruz police station and the troops of the 81st IB, for convincing the NPA rebels to surrender to the authorities.
The army’s 7th Infantry Division Commander Maj. Gen. Afredo V. Rosario Jr. welcomed the surrender of the two NPA members in Ilocos Sur to the authorities as he commended the efforts of the members of the task force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (TF ELCAC).
“The cliché that there is strength in unity is true. This is evident with the cooperation of all the stakeholders in the implementation of the programs of the government to end the local communist armed conflict has been stronger than before,” Rosario said.
Meanwhile, concerned government agencies in Ilocos Sur are now working on the possible assistance for the two surrendered NPA rebels under the Enhanced Comprehensive Livelihood Integration Program (E-CLIP).