TACLOBAN CITY — The local government of Carigara in Leyte welcomes the mass surrender of at least 186 members and supporters of various controlled and allied organizations of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) recently.
The surrenderers came from the villages of Caghalo, Hiloctogan, Upper Hiraan, Libo, Canlampay, Tinaguban, Candigahub, Paglaum, and Parag-um.Vice-mayor Eduardo Ong Jr. said the local government unit provided them with financial assistance to complete their return to society.
He added that the surrenderers took their full commitment and allegiance to the government in maintaining the peace and development situation of their locality.
“This mass surrender by the rebels is a huge step to having a more peaceful Leyte. We strongly urge other rebels to come down and together, we can build a truly united, nonviolent, and more orderly province,” Ong shared.
Aside from the financial assistance, the Technical Education And Skills Development Authority (TESDA-8) conducted a skills inventory to determine the livelihood intervention that will be provided to the former rebels.
During the program, some members of the organization shared their experiences on how they were allegedly exploited by attending rallies and demonstrations.
This includes providing moral and logistical support to the NPA members operating the area.Mary Ann Nitura, a representative from the youth sector, also shared her experience when her parents were deceived and recruited as CPP-NPA-NDF supporters.
With the help of the government, she is optimistic that the exploitation from the generation of her grandparents up to the present where they all became supporters will finally be stopped.Brigadier General Zosimo Oliveros, Commander of 802nd Infantry Brigade, said the occasion marks a significant milestone in the government’s campaign to end the more than 52 years of local communist armed conflict.
The presence of the different government agencies and the people delivers a strong message of solidarity that the CPP-NPA-NDF is no longer welcome in the municipality.