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Government offers free housing, livelihood aid to every CPP/NPA surrenderer

CEBU, Philippines - Every member of the Communist Party of the Philippines/New People's Army who will surrender and return to the fold of the law, the government will grant free housing and livelihood assistance.

This was announced by Major General Jon Aying in his speech during the 11th founding anniversary of the 79th Infantry Battalion, now headed by Lieutenant Colonel Roderick Garcia, in ceremonies held at Camp Leon Kilat in Tanjay City, Negros Oriental.

Aying said that, in addition to these grants, a rebel surrenderer will be allowed to keep their firearms to enable them to defend against attacks by their comrades who would refuse to heed the call of the government.

Aying said President Rodrigo Duterte issued these offers during his visit to the wake of the murdered policemen in Guihulngan City last July 27.

At present, there is an ongoing massive recruitment by the communist rebels, according to Aying, who however was confident that the number of rebels in Negros could not reach 250 or 300 due to the economics of war. Recruitment would mean additional resources, and the CPP/NPA is now dependent only on extortion activities for such funding needs, Aying said.

It is also possible that the rebels may resort to illegal drugs to get enough funds, but Aying said these activities must be stopped.

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Aying said that “as soon as our forces in Mindanao are back we will teach them (rebels) a lesson again, and this time it will be harder and more regretful for them.”

Negros Oriental Governor Roel Degamo, for his part, congratulated the 79th IB, which he said has been vital in sustaining peace and order in the province. (FREEMAN)

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