NPAs who returned to gov't fold now 4,536: AFP
The number of communist rebels who surrendered to the government forces has reached 4,356, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said Thursday.
Lt. Col. Emmanuel Garcia, AFP Public Affairs chief, said these include “regular members and supporters of the New People's Army (NPA) who surrendered nationwide from 01 January to 15 March 2018.”
“The figure is composed of 626 NPA regulars and Sangay sa Partido Lokal (SPL) or local party members and 3,730 Militia ng Bayan (MB), Underground Mass Organization (UGMO) members and mass supporters,” he said.
Garcia said majority of those who surrendered were from eastern Mindanao “particularly in the regions of Davao and CARAGA totalling 96 percent or 4,194.”
“This includes the 1,265 NPA supporters and residents of nine barangays of Monkayo town in Compostela Valley on 07 March 2018 and the recent defection of 115 supporters in Trento, Agusan del Sur,” he said.
“The massive surrenders of NPAs and their supporters were attributed to combined focused military operations, intelligence efforts, civil-military operations, re-integration efforts, peace and development programs of the AFP and PNP; and the intense campaign of local government units in convincing their constituents who are members and supporters of the NPA to go back to mainstream society,” he added.
Garcia said the military is expecting that more rebels will surrender in the future “as former rebels and supporters divulge corruption and deception inside the (Communist Party of the Philippines ? New people’s Army) CPP-NPA.”
“Revelations from former rebels disclosed that most of them were deceived into believing the propaganda and false promises of their leaders,” he said.
“The former rebels warn would-be recruits not to fall on the pattern of deception being done by the NPA terrorists and call on their former comrades to take the peaceful path to change,” he added. Robina Asido/DMS