11 CTG Members and 3 Supporters Comprise the New Batch of Surrenderers in Masbate Province
CAMP ELIAS ANGELES, Pili, Camarines Sur – Masbateños' continuing disgust against communist insurgency and the Army's persistent security operations continues to encourage members and supporters of the Communist Terrorist Group (CTG) to return to the folds of the law.
On May 23, eleven CTG members and three supporters yielded to the combined elements of the 903rd Infantry Brigade's 2nd Infantry Battalion (2IB) and PNP conducting continuous security operations in Barangay San Antonio, Palanas, Masbate.
Also turned in by the mass surrenderers were 14 low-powered firearms.
Lt. Col. Siegfried Felipe Awichen, Battalion Commander of 2IB said that the group will now undergo series of debriefing prior to their enrollment in the government's Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP).
Col. Aldwine Almase, Brigade Commander of the 903Bde, stressed that the triumph of Masbateños against the CTG is a proof that when the government and the people work together, nothing is impossible.
"Years ago, Masbate province was once a stronghold of the CTG. But now, we are seeing a different picture in this island province. If Masbateños can make the communist insurgency irrelevant in their home province, it means that we can also do this in the entire Bicol," Col. Almase said.
MGEN HENRY A ROBINSON JR PA, Commander of the Joint Task Force (JTF) Bicolandia recognized the relentless efforts not just of the Army and PNP but of the Masbateños who boldly show their strong repugnance against the CTG which led to these remarkable accomplishments.
"It is very rewarding to see how the Bicolanos are now rallying behind us as we press on the fight against insurgency. As we soar higher in our thrust towards peace and progress in Bicol, the CTG will continue to crumble and will eventually reach its natural death. Napakarami na nating mga nakakamit na tagumpay lalo na sa Masbate pero hindi tayo titigil hangga't hindi natin nakakamit ang pangmatagalang kapayapaan sa buong Bicolandia," MGen. Robinson said.
Just this month of May, 31 surrenderers were recorded in Masbate who turned in a total of 21 assorted firearms.