KIANGAN, IFUGAO – The dedication of soldiers from the 54th Infantry Battalion (Magilas troopers) had gained the trust of the community as well as some rebels and militia ng bayan (MB).
The heart-warming passion of the Magilas troopers convinced an alleged member of the New People’s Army and 13 Militia ng Bayan from the provinces of Ifugao, Mountain Province and Nueva Vizcaya to embrace the government for good.
These alleged rebels and Militia ng Bayan were inspired by the stories of the previous surrenderees for the warm accommodation and treatment by the military personnel and the benefits they received from the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) during the recent visit of President Rodrigo Duterte at Camp Melchor F Dela Cruz, Upi, Gamu, Isabela, the 54th IB reported
Militia ng Bayan refers “to individuals who have been indoctrinated and may or may not be directly involved in violent armed struggle but, when organized, can provide mass support of the revolutionary movement of the CPP/NPA/NDP.”
As a result of their voluntary surrender, the 14 individuals were presented and joined in the just concluded Former Rebels Peace Summit held at the Northern Luzon Command (NOLCOM) headquarters in Camp Servillano Aquino, Tarlac City.
“We were treated like their own comrades, no gaps between facilitators and us, returnees. We were considered part of their family that made us comfortable at all times,” an MB member stated.
Before returning to their respective places, the returnees were given grocery items, cash gifts and certificate of house entitlement from the National Housing Authority through the E-CLIP program.
Lieutenant Colonel Narcisio Nabulneg Jr., 54th IB commander, lauded the soldiers for their dedication in performing their mandates.
“To the brave ones, you did the right decision in returning to the folds of the law and embrace peace in the mainstream society. After all, nothing is more important than to be with your loved ones and enjoy a peaceful and productive life,” Nabulneg said. MARCELO B. LIHGAWON, PIA-Ifugao / ABN
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