President Duterte welcomes 189 former rebels
January 10, 2019
Camp Elias Angeles, Pili, Camarines Sur- Former members of the New People’s Army, totaling to 189, were presented to President Rodrigo Duterte in a simple ceremony held at the Grandstand of the Cataingan National High School in Masbate last January 9, 2019.
Witnessing the event were a number of government officials and Armed Forces of the Philippines personnel including Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Secretary John Castriciones, Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año; AFP Chief of Staff General Benjamin R Madrigal, Philippine Army Commanding General, LtGen Macairog Alberto, SOLCOM Commander LtGen Danilo G Pamonag, the Commander of the 9th Infantry (Spear) Division MGen Fernando T Trinidad, Governor Antonio Kho and other local government officials of Masbate.
Of the 189 former rebels, 41 of them used to be regular members of the NPA, while 55 came from Sangay ng Partido sa Lokalidad (SPL) and the 93 were from Milisyang Bayan (MB). Some of these former rebels were previously presented to DND Secretary Lorenzana in October last year and the assistance they were due to receive have already been processed under the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP).
In his message to the surrendered rebels, President Duterte reiterated that that the communists have been fighting a lost cause for 50 years. He added that they bring nothing but chaos and disturbance in the community and oppression and abuse to the people.
The President also presented financial assistance to the formers rebels and assured them of other benefits from the lead and partner agencies of the under E-CLIP. Among them are a piece of land from the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) and housing program from the National Housing Authority (NHA), livelihood assistance from Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Agriculture (DA) and the local government, as well as livelihood trainings to be provided by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA). The President also ordered the establishment of a cooperative for former rebels to ensure that the assistance and benefits presented to them are properly managed.
The E-CLIP program is a social reintegration program of the government that started in 2016. It is being assessed and monitored by the Task Force Balik-Loob headed by Defense Undersecretary Reynaldo B. Mapagu and participated in by lead and partner government agencies including DILG, NHA, DAR, DA, DSWD, TESDA and the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) among others. The E-CLIP’s number one champion is no less than President Rodrigo Duterte.
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