Local chief executives told to take lead in ending insurgency

Brigadier General Eric Vinoya, Philippine Army’s 3rd Infantry Division commander (PIA)

By: Jennifer P. Rendon 

Insurgency cannot be solved through military means alone.

This, Brigadier General Eric Vinoya, Philippine Army’s 3rd Infantry Division commander, reiterated as he assumed his post on Nov. 12, 2019.

The 3rd ID’s areas of responsibility include Western and Central Visayas.

Vinoya, a member of Philippine Military Academy (PMA) Class 1987, succeeded Major General Dinoh Dolina who bowed out of uniformed service after more than 38 years.

“We have already seen that it takes more than military means to solve the insurgency concerns. We need the convergence of efforts by all sectors of society, by all agencies of the government, and the local government units to address the root causes of insurgency,” Vinoya said in his assumption speech.

He stressed that the role of local chief executives – the governors and mayors – are very critical and important in ending the local communist armed conflict.

“I challenge all the governors and mayors to take the lead and be at the forefront in ending insurgency in their respective locality being the chairman of the local task force on ELCAC,” he said.

Task Force ELCAC (End Local Communist Armed Conflict) is a multi-agency group created to harmonize and optimize government efforts and resources at the provincial level to address the root causes of insurgency and attain sustainable peace and development.

“I do believe that good governance is the key in ending insurgency,” he said.

Together with the local chief executives, Vinoya urged different government agencies at the regional and provincial levels to do their part in attaining the government’s mission of ending the local armed conflict by “ensuring that their mandates are carried out as expected.”

“Let us join forces in this fight so that together we will be able to achieve and enjoy the peace and development we have been longing for,” he said.



Prior to his current appointment, Vinoya was 3ID’s assistant division commander.

Being able to see firsthand the prevailing situation division-wide, he had a clear picture of its subordinate units as far as their tasks and accomplishments are concerned.

“I know there are a lot of tasks at hand and more to be accomplished,” he said.

Currently, there are still seven fronts and 87 barangays that need to be cleared.

“If necessary, we have to make some adjustments on our target goals and review our plans,” he said.

The implementation of the different lines of efforts will have to be further enhanced in order to accomplish these goals. One is the need to intensify the military’s engagements with the stakeholders.

“They are our partners in our peace and development efforts in Western and Central Visayas,” he said.

In sustaining the gains the Joint Task Force Spear and Task Force Negros have achieved, Vinoya said it should be coupled with the implementation of Executive Order No. 70.

President Rodrigo Duterte’s EO No. 70 is about “Institutionalizing the Whole-Of-Nation Approach in Attaining Inclusive and Sustainable Peace, Creating A National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict, and Directing the Adoption of A National Peace Framework.”



Vinoya also urged the rebels to give up their armed struggle and be with the government.

Sa puntong ito, binibigyan ko ng pagkakataon ang mga kapatid nating New People’s Army, ‘yung mga nasa kabundukan pa, na pilit pa ding ipinaglaban ang walang saysay na ideolohiya, na bumaba na kayo at sumuko upang matamasa ninyo ang mga benepisyo at iba pang programa ng ating gobyerno at ng sa gayon ay mamuhay kayo ng mapayapa at tahimik,” he said.

Vinoya acknowledged that most that joined the rebels were deceived.

Dalawa lang ang pwede nyong gawin: ang sumuko at mamuhay ng payapa o ang hindi pagsuko at mamatay ng walang saysay at iwan ang mga mahal niyo sa buhay. Mamili kayo,” he said.

In a recent TF ELCAC meeting, the members vowed to end insurgency in Panay by March 2020.

Negros Island, on the other hand, might take a while.