VIGAN CITY, Ilocos Sur (PIA) – Some nine former rebels in Ilocos Sur recently got financial assistance through the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program or E-CLIP of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC).
The Army said the recipients are former members of the dismantled Kilusang Larangang Gerilya South Ilocos Sur or KLG-SIS, Weakened Guerilla Front Abra-Mountain Province-Ilocos Sur or WGF-AMPIS, and Militia ng Bayan members utilized by KLG-SIS.
Paeng, not his real name, was one of them.
He surrendered in 2021 and has received various assistance from the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Trade and Industry, the Department of Labor and Employment, and the Department of Social Welfare and Development, among others.
He expressed his gratitude to the NTF-ELCAC for giving him an opportunity to surrender and be with his family again.
“Maraming salamat po sa provincial government, DILG, Philippine Army at sa iba pang ahensya ng gobyerno. Totoo po ang E-CLIP na isang napakagandang programa ng gobyerno sa pag-uumpisa ng aming pagbabagong-buhay,” he said.
He then encouraged his former comrades who are still active in the terrorist group to return to the folds of the law as he felt the sincerity of the government in helping them start anew a peaceful life through the assistance and support he and his family have been receiving.
“Kaya sa mga kasama naming patuloy na naloloko ng maling paniniwala, hindi pa huli ang lahat. Huwag kayo sanang matakot na magbalik-loob dahil ang kasundaluhan ng Philippine Army at ang totoong gobyerno natin ay may totoong malasakit sa atin,” Paeng said.
A total of P1,078,526.74 was provided to all of the recipients, according to DILG.
This covered firearm remuneration, livelihood, and other social services vital to their reintegration into society. (JCR/AMB/JMCQ, PIA Ilocos Sur)