907 ex-rebels in Normin return to government fold

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Feb. 2 (PIA)--About 907 former rebels in northern Mindanao have already returned to the fold of the law since 2014.

During the NorMin COVID-19 Response Task Force Press Conference, January 29, Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG)-10 Regional Director Arnel Agabe said there are 66 surrenderees in CY 2014, 2015 (49), 2016 (24), 2017 (42), 2018 (178), 2019 (280), and 2020 (268).

As for the assistance, the department has spent about P14 million worth of livelihood and reintegration assistance, and firearms remuneration.

For the immediate assistance, DILG-10 spent P2.7 million to aid 181 beneficiaries; P6.8 million for the livelihood assistance of 136 former rebels; P4 million for the reintegration assistance of 594 former rebels; and P962 thousand for the 20 former rebels who availed the firearms remuneration of the department. 

For 2021, DILG-10 recently provided livelihood assistance worth P150,000 to three former rebels in Cagayan de Oro City. 

Aside from DILG, the National Housing Authority (NHA) also helped in improving the lives of former rebels through turning over 100 houses, December 8.

This is aside from the other ongoing housing projects for former rebels in Cagayan de Oro and other parts of northern Mindanao, Agabe added.

"Kita nagatuo nga kining mga assistance nagahatag ug bag-o nga kinabuhi sa atong mga former rebels nga ningbalik sa sabakan sa gobyerno mahitungod nga nakita nila ang paningkamot sa atong national government pinaagi ni President Rodrigo Duterte nga mahatagan na nato ug kaangayan nga solusyon ang lima ka dekada nga insurgency problem dinhi sa atong nasud," the regional director said.

(We believe that these assistance will give new life to our former rebels who returned to the fold of the law since they saw the efforts of the national government through President Rodrigo Duterte to give appropriate solution to the five-decade insurgency problem in the country.)

He added that such problem on insurgency is not only solved through military operations but also through the collaboration of national line agencies thus, the implementation of Executive Order 70 or institutionalization of the whole-of-nation approach in attaining inclusive and sustainable peace, creating a national task force to end local communist armed conflict, and directing
the adoption of a national peace framework. (RTP/PIA10)

Source: Philippines Information Agency (pia.gov.ph)

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