OROQUIETA CITY, Misamis Occidental (PIA)—A newly-constructed Balay Paglaum or halfway house in 10IB Camp, Barangay Burgos, Oroquieta City awaits former rebels who were given “new life” after their voluntary surrender to the government.
The national government through the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) in Misamis Occidental turned over to Misamis Occidental Provincial Government the P5-million halfway house for former rebels (FRs). Also, the province provided assistance of more than P1 million for the counterpart or implementation of Balay Paglaum.
Governor Philip T. Tan thanked the national government through the DILG for providing funds for the construction of the halfway house that will benefit former rebels in the province.
Tan shared that the government is serious in helping former rebels (FRs) return to civil society.
“Atong nakita kung unsa ka seryoso ang gobyerno mo pangga ug pagmahal sa atong FRs. Nakita nako nga daghan ang programa sa gobyerno gikan sa Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and Technical Education and skills Development Authority (TESDA) nga karon nagsugod na ug implementar sa tanang livelihood ug hinabang para sa atong mga FRs. Daghang salamat, the provincial government is here as your big brother ug inyong kaabag sa atong paglakbay ning kinabuhi para kita mahimong tipik ug kabahin sa kalamboan sa atong probinsya,” he said.
(We now see how serious the government in caring and showing love to our FRs. I see the numerous programs of the government from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and Technical Education and skills Development Authority (TESDA) who are now starting to implement all of its livelihood and assistance for the FRs. Thank you, the provincial government is here as your big brother and your partner in this walk of life so that we can contribute and be a part of the development of the province.)
For his part, DILG Provincial Director Pablio Benitez said the realization of the halfway houses and assistance to former rebels was through the unified efforts of different government agencies.
“Seryoso gyud ang gobyerno sa atong programa sa ECLIP ug insurgency dili lang sa National pati na gyud ang local government. Kini usa ka major accomplishment or milestone sa atong programa sa ECLIP sa probinsya,” Benitez said.
(The government is indeed serious in its programs for ECLIP and insurgency not only at the national level but including the local government. This is a major accomplishment or milestone of the ECLIP program in the province.)
Meanwhile, Battalion Commander of 10th IB Philippine Army LTC Angestal Angeles II said the halfway house is meant to offer transitional opportunities for individuals who are attempting to return to society as healthy, law abiding, and productive members of the society.
“These individuals can stay at the facility while waiting for the processing of their documents as beneficiaries of the government Enhance Comprehensive Local Integration Program (ECLIP), a special program of the national government to entice members and supporters of the rebel group to return to the fold of the law,” he added.
The 85 former rebels in the province also received monthly assistance worth P2,500 for four months equivalent to P10,000 each under the Pantawid program.
Equipped with comfortable beds, separate bathrooms and comfort rooms, a dining and kitchen area, as well as a living room for entertainment, the facility can accommodate at least 26 individuals. (SMRN/PIA-10/Misamis Occidental)