Camp Peralta, Jamindan, Capiz – Army troops all over Panay and Negros Islands were ordered to be more vigilant as the government’s unilateral ceasefire ended January 19. The 3rd Infantry Division said that resumption of conduct of combat operations shall be pushed through in its area of responsibility.
“Our main goal here is to maintain peace and order, especially in the hinterland barangays,” said Major General Rey Leonardo Guerrero, 3ID Commander. “But eventually, we want our brothers and sisters from the New People’s Army to lay down their arms and be with us in our peace efforts.”
He cited that government is offering a Comprehensive Local Integration Program (CLIP), which focuses on the integration of members of the New People’s Army (NPA) who wish to abandon the armed struggle. Under CLIP, a rebel who surrenders to the government with their firearms will be given a P15,000 financial support, livelihood assistance of P50,000, and remuneration for surrendered firearm depending on the caliber whether high powered or low powered. Livelihood training and support shall be also provided to the rebels and their families.
Furthermore, Major General Guerrero also reminded the Army troops to remain focused on its mandate to serve and secure the people of Western Visayas. “We should be steadfast in pursuing our respective mission with other stakeholders in the community,” he added.
Meanwhile, the 3ID troops sent to Leyte to augment the security contingent during the Papal Visit arrived on Tuesday, January 20 in Iloilo on board a C130. Those assigned in Negros Island were transported directly to Dumaguete City. The contingent led by Lt. Colonel Marion Sison supported the Joint Task Force POPE to ensure the smooth conduct of security operations during Pope Francis’ visit in Tacloban and Palo, Leyte on January 17.
Sison, in his report to Guerrero, said the 3ID contingent was able to perform their assigned tasks. He also underscored that the soldiers sent to Leyte felt privileged to be chosen to secure the Pope.
Source: DIVISION PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE, 3RD INFANTRY (SPEARHEAD) DIVISION, PHILIPPINE ARMY