Fri. Sep 17th, 2021

A total of 491 members of the Communist Party of the Philippines – New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) operating in Northern and Central Luzon returned to the fold of the law in the first six months of the year.

(photo courtesy: http://www.pna.gov.ph)

Records of the Northern Luzon Command (Nolcom) showed the figures are higher compared to the same period last year with 198 rebel-surrenderers.

Lt. Gen. Arnulfo Marcelo B. Burgos Jr., Nolcom commander, said Friday from January to the present, an average of two NPA rebels with one firearm returned to the government’s fold every day, “a clear manifestation of the terrorist group’s imminent collapse in Northern and Central Luzon.”

These are apart from the 767 party members of the different NPA-affiliated mass organizations who have withdrawn their support from the terrorist group and pledged their allegiance to the government.

Burgos attributed the surge of surrenders and withdrawal of support to their unrelenting internal security operations and sustained community engagement through their community support program.

He added that 29 NPA personalities were neutralized during armed encounters and joint law enforcement operations with the Philippine National Police.

“With the current rate of surrenders, it’s only a matter of time that the NPAs will be totally decimated in this part of the country and we will never waver in our commitment to sustain the peace and continue to foster development in this region,” Burgos said in an official social media account post.

He also cited the success of Nolcom’s other campaign initiatives, particularly in territorial defense.

Burgos said through strategic partnership, a desalination facility has been operationalized in Mavulis Island, the northernmost island of the country where a Philippine Marine detachment closely monitors the country’s northern maritime territory.

The desalination facility can produce 1,500 liters of potable water in six hours.

Burgos also underscored the active participation of the coastal communities in Nolcom’s efforts to preserve the country’s sovereignty in its northern maritime domain.

“Some fisher folks are members of the established maritime information network who serve as ‘eyes and ears’ and enhances the government’s efforts to monitor the northern territorial waters,” he said. “The active support of our stakeholders has helped our campaign flourish. They inspired us to do more and achieve more. Rest assured that we will continue to exert our best efforts in the service of our people.”

The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines. 

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