Army wins hearts of communist rebels in SK

Capt. Arvin John Encinas, Army’s 6th Infantry Division spokesperson, said the latest surrender of communist rebels took place Friday before officials of the Army’s 1st Mechanized Infantry Battalion in Esperanza town in Sultan Kudarat.

Encinas identified the four NPA rebels as Ongoy Galing aka Jeric, 23 years old, Sammy Galing, 51 years old, Archie Balabagan, 31 years old, and Ese Ginta, 49 years old who are residents of Barangay Marquez,

They belonged to the NPA Platoon My Phone of Guerrilla Front 73.
The rebel returnees turned over two Elisco rifles, 1 Bushmaster rifle, and 1 Garand rifle.

This week alone, a total of 10 communist rebels have surrendered to the military. Eight of whom yielded last Nov. 2 and another two on Nov. 6.

Since May, a total of 72 rebels from the Manobo Dulangan indigenous peoples community operating in the Daguma ranges have rejoined the mainstream.

Encinas said the former rebels have decided to return to the folds of law because of the hardship they experienced in the mountains of Sultan Kudarat and the false promises of their communist leaders.

The surrender of the rebels was a joint effort of the Army’s 1st Mechanized Infantry Battalion (IB), 33rd IB, and 38th IB. They were presented to Esperanza Mayor Helen Latog and Sultan Kudarat Governor Pakung Mangudadatu, respectively.

As surrenderers, they are qualified to avail of the government’s Comprehensive Local Integration Program where they get livelihood assistance to restart a new life. –Edwin Fernandez/PNA