High-ranking NPA leader surrenders

A former NPA high-ranking leader surrenders to the military troopers led by Lieutenant Colonel Melvin Flores, commander of the Army’s 62nd Infantry Battalion (IB) in Isabela, Negros Occidental Thursday. (Photo courtesy of 303rd IBde)

By Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD City – An alleged full-time party member of the New People’s Army (NPA) and commanding officer of a local guerilla unit in the central part of Negros Occidental surrendered to the military forces in Isabela town on Thursday.

A report from the Army’s 303rd Infantry Brigade (IBde) said that the rebel is a 33-year-old man from Himamaylan City. His name was withheld.

He also turned over an M16 rifle with a magazine, a .45 caliber pistol with two magazines, assorted ammunition, and a handheld radio with accessories.

He is now undergoing custodial and stress debriefing prior to his enrollment to the government’s Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) in order to receive immediate welfare assistance, livelihood assistance, and incentives for the surrendered firearms.

Colonel Inocencio Pasaporte, 303rd IBde commander, said that the continuous hardships, hunger, and false promises of NPA leaders have prompted him to go back to the fold of the law.

The former guerilla leader also revealed to the authorities the continuous exploitation of the NPAs among the masses in the outlying sitios of Central Negros and the alleged involvement of a certain barangay official in facilitating the transport of logistics and ranking NPA communist leaders.

Meanwhile, Major General Eric Vinoya, commander of 3rd Infantry Division (ID), said he appreciated the decision of the former guerilla commander to surrender.

“He made a good decision to go back to the folds of the law because he has not only avoided misfortune, following the resumption of our offensive operations, but was also able to reunite with his family who needs him the most in these trying times,” Vinoya said.