NPA officer, 12 supporters surrender in Compostela Valley
An officer and 12 supporters of the communist New People's Army have surrendered to the Armed Forces of the Philippines in Compostela Valley, military said on Sunday.
According to 71st Infantry Battalion of 7th Infantry Division of Philippine Army, those who surrendered on Saturday were members of a solid mass organization of the NPA.
Those who went back to the folds of law were identified as Geraldo Baro, alias Arnold, a former vice commander; Gilberto Bustalino alias Iping; Simon Gilo, alias Imon; Reel Balbin, alias Longlong; Ellen Oso, alias Ellan: Elmer Bongcales alias Elmer; Elmer Duterte, alias Dodong; Alfredo Dosdos, alias Fredo; Ramil Balbin alias Mil; Allan Costelo, alias Allan; Hilario Inte, alias Larry; Junre Bongcales, alias Jun; and John Ryan Babo, alias Chong.
Authorities said personalities signified their intentions to embrace peace in their lives.
“We are very thankful to the support we are getting from the barangay officials and IP (indigenous people) leaders in our area of operations who are now our partner in facilitating the NPA to surrender,” said Lt. Col. Esteveyn E. Ducusin, commanding officer of Army’s 71st Infantry Kaibigan Battalion, 7ID.
“The significant number of NPAs who surrendered every day is a manifestation that the communist terrorist organization is irrelevant and people are tired of supporting them. Likewise, we continue our focused military operation to hunt down those Communist Terrorist who continue their violent acts against our constituents," Ducusin added.
The 71st IB remains steadfast in performing its mandate to serve and protect the people in the area of operation, he said.
President Rodrigo Duterte has declared the Communist Party of the Philippines-NPA as terrorist organizations after he ordered the formal termination of the peace talks last year. Ella Dionisio/DMS