98 former NPA rebels pledge allegiance to gov’t

Published March 7, 2021, 11:45 AM

by Tara Yap

ILOILO CITY – Ninety-eight former New People’s Army (NPA) rebels have pledged allegiance to the government in Panay Island and Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police Gen. Debold Sinas has urged them to support the national government’s fight against communist insurgency.

Philippine National Police chief Police Gen. Debold Sinas (at rostrum) urges former New People’s Army rebels in Panay Island to support the government’s campaign to end communist insurgency. (PRO 6 photo / MANILA BULLETIN)

Sinas told them during their pledge of allegiance ceremony in Oton, Iloilo that the government is “always ready to accept and help them even though they once committed a mistake to the government.” They are the latest to withdraw support from the Communist Party of the Philippines and took their oath of allegiance before the Western Visayas Regional Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (Western Visayas RTF-ELCAC).

The 98 surrenderers – 57 from Tapaz, Capiz and 41 from Calino, Iloilo – are covered by the program dubbed “Akap Kapatid” which Police Brig. Gen. Rolando Miranda, Police Regional Office 6 (Western Visayas) director, said is a psycho-social program that aims to prepare former rebels for reintegration to society. “It also aims to change their belief and build their confidence towards the government,” added Miranda.