KAPATAGAN, Lanao del Norte (PIA) — Three members of the Communist NPA Terrorist (CNT) formally laid down their arms and surrendered to the Philippine Army in Kapatagan town on Thursday, May 7.
The CNTs voluntarily surrendered to Brigadier General Facundo O Palafox IV, Commander of 2nd Mechanized Infantry (Magbalantay) Brigade through the effort of 5th Mechanized Infantry (Kaagapay) Battalion under Colonel Rolando D. Orengo, in cooperation with the Municipality of Kapatagan, Lanao del Norte headed by Mayor Barry Y. Baguio and 51st Mechanized (Mawarao) Company under 1Lt Earlborne Jan P Manquiquis.
The surrenderees were identified as @ Ryan, 40 years old, a former liaison and repository of firearms of SECOM TRAKK who yielded one (1) 5.56mm Rifle bearing Serial Number 0665743 with one (1) Magazine with twenty (20) rounds ammunition and one (1) Caliber .45 Pistol bearing Serial Number 531102 with one (1) magazine and two (2) rounds ammunition; @Jack, 49 years old, a former courier and supporter of Guerilla Front 17 and SECOM TRAKK who yielded one (1) M79 40mm Grenade Launcher with one (1) 12 Gauge (Homemade) Shotgun, and @ Rolan, 51 years old, a former Team Leader of Sangay ng Yunit Propaganda (SYP) who yielded three (3) Caliber 30 Carbine Rifle bearing Serial Number 5127217, 847392 and 607281 with three (3) Magazine and seventeen (17) rounds of ammunition.
According to Col. Orengo, the surrenderees have decided to return to the folds of the law due to the hardship that they experienced inside the organization. Aside from that they already want to live a better and peaceful life with their families.
The surrender of the three CNT is another a big blow to the CPP-NPA who are trying to win back Lanao del Norte. It also shows that they have no space in the Province as it is already fast-tracking its economic and human development.
“We are very grateful that they have decided to return back to the government where they can start a new and normal life with their families as ordinary citizens have experienced,’ Col. Orengo added.
He also assured that the Philippine Army and the Provincial Government of Lanao del Norte will do their share for their safety and security.
Meanwhile, BGen Palafox stressed that “the successful surrender of CNT members is a result of the collective efforts made by the military, local government unit, and other stakeholders. Despite the current COVID-19 pandemic crisis, we will assure the public that Army units under my command will continue to intensify its efforts to safeguard the safety and welfare of the general public and ensure that peace and stability in the Brigade’s area of operation sustained.”
He also enjoined the remaining CNT members to lay down their arms and embrace the program of the government for the interest of peace and development and for their beloved families.” (5th Mech Battalion/PIA ICIC)