MANOLO FORTICH, Bukidnon - At least four of the top-ranking members of the New People's Army rebels that surrendered to authorities this week have revealed that the false promises of "recruiters" enticed them to join the guerilla movement.
The surrenderees narrated that their nightmare with their comrades in the jungles of Bukidnon began when they encountered so much difficulties in the underground movement, contrary to what has been promised and preached by the CPP-NPA organization.
Jackielyn Ann Elaco alias “Lala,” 34 years old, was the Finance Officer and Political Instructor of Platoon Derek, based in North Central Mindanao Committee (NCMRC).
Gloria Jandaya, also known as “Diding,” 63, was the staff of the Regional Urban Committee, while her daughter, Gleceria Balangiao alias “Jao,” 34, is the Liaison Staff of Regional Urban Committee.
The youngest of the four, Lorena Micabalo alias “Jai-Jai,” 24, was the Political Officer of SYP Company 3, also from the North Central Mindanao urban Committee.
During the formal surrender of Gloria Jandaya, she brought with her medical and dental kits, she used in treating their wounded comrades during gunbattles with government forces. She also turned-over cell phones and a personal computer (tablet). The gadgets are now undergoing "contents forensics and analysis" to ensure that information gathered will be used by the government in court during the filing of cases to persons linked to the terrorist group in the country.
VICTIMS OF EXPLOITATION
Meanwhile, Col Edgardo De Leon, 403rd brigade commander said these four women were only victims of exploitation by the NPA rebels, the reason that they should be helped by the government to start a new life under the E-CLIP program of the present administration of Pres. Rodrigo Duterte.
“Their being among the marginalized sector of the society was exploited by CPP-NPA cadres who posed as ‘Poverty Liberators' promising better lives, but in reality brought them into the armed terrorist movement,” De Leon added
4th Infantry Division Commander, Brigadier General Franco Nemesio Gacal, also commended the 1SFBn troops for painstakingly reaching out and convincing the four to return to the folds of law and enroll in government’s E-CLIP.
“This is the kind of 'Peaceful War' that I have been advocating our soldiers and peace partners. We don’t have to use our traditional weapons to end the armed conflict in our country.
The four surrenderors are now saved from the risk or danger of possible injury or death. They were actually rescued by the soldiers and civilians who acted as conduits.
"We thank our peace partners for believing, trusting, and joining in our call for a united effort to foster peace in our communities,” BrigGen. Gacal said. - Cpt. Ryan D. Layug/JCE