CPP-NPA bomb expert surrenders in Iloilo
By Perla Lena / Philippine News Agency
ILOILO CITY – A bomb expert of the Communist Party of the Philippines -New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) has severed his ties with the terror group seeing the government is serious in its peace efforts.
Using "Ka Alvin" as his alias, he voluntarily surrendered to the Criminal Investigation and Detection Unit 6 (CIDU 6) of the Police Regional Office 6 (PRO6) on May 28, 2021.
His surrender will have a big impact on the CPP-NPA "because they lost a bomb expert", he said in broken Tagalog on Tuesday.
“Our comrades will have low morale because I am now separated from the movement,” he added during a press presentation held at the headquarters of the Police Regional Office 6 (PRO6) here.
He decided to surrender since he found it difficult to visit his family as the rebels' movement in the mountain has been restricted following the enactment of the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020.
He realized that he would not get anything from staying with the armed movement but had contributed to the loss of many innocent lives due to his expertise in handling explosives.
Ka Alvin was only 12 years old when he joined the armed movement in 1986 after a politician grabbed his family's land in Negros.
He was 15 when he was sent to Malaysia for a “demolition course” in 1989.
When he came back to the country, he stayed in Iloilo City and served as team leader of the Regional Command Armed Liquidation Squad Special Operations Group (RCALS-SOG) of the NPA.
He said that once you are sent to train abroad, you would be considered important in the movement because you can manufacture a weapon that can cause destruction.
Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) 6 acting regional chief Lt. Col. Gervacio Balmaceda Jr., said the surrender is a “big blow” to the CPP-NPA because they lost an “endangered species”.
CIDU-6, the unit to which Ka Alvin surrendered, is under the CIDG in Western Visayas.
Ka Alvin will be subjected to operational research to determine his involvement in atrocities and if there are already cases filed against him, he said.
Balmaceda, however, said that in their conversation, Ka Alvin admitted that he was part of the encounter in Himamaylan, Negros Occidental in 2001 where 17 members of the Philippine Army were killed.
He also joined the CPP-NPA in launching an attack against the Philippine Army in Calinog, Iloilo where nine died and 18 were wounded on the side of the army.
He also participated in “hit and run” ambush-style against the government troops when he was active with the ALEOSAN (Alimodian-Leon-San Miguel) Squad District from 2002 to 2006.
The rebel said that in 2007 they assassinated an army intelligence officer in a cockpit arena in Leon, Iloilo, and ambushed government troops also in the same town in 2008.
Balmaceda said that they would use the surrenderer as a state witness in the filing of cases against the CPP-NPA. “There are so many unsolved cases in the past. We are thankful to our former rebels who submit their judicial affidavits,” he added.
Ka Alvin surrendered an M16 baby armalite with magazines and ammunition. The armalite, he said, was recovered in an encounter with the Philippine Army in Himamaylan.
Balmaceda said the surrenderer will receive remuneration for the surrendered firearm and would also be recommended to avail of benefits under the Enhanced-Comprehensive Local Integration Program (ECLIP).
Ka Alvin encouraged other CPP-NPA members to surrender and avail of the program offered by the government.
The CPP-NPA, which has been waging a five-decade armed struggle against the government, is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines. (PNA)