Monday Nov, 29 2021 05:20:08 AM

NPA leader, 7 men yield to Army in Sultan Kudarat

Mindanao Peace Process • 22:00 PM Wed Nov 3, 2021
Edwin O. Fernandez
Lt. Colonel Rommel Valencia (2nd from left), 7th Infantry Battalion commander, receives a rifle from one of the former NPA guerillas during surrender rites at the battalion headquarters in Kalawag, Isulan, Sultan Kudarat. (Army photo)

CAMP SIONGCO, Maguindanao –  Military officials in Central Mindanao region said communist movement in the province continue to dwindle as a ranking New Peoples Army (NPA) leader and his men surrendered to the government.

In a statement Thursday, Lt. Colonel Rommel Valencia, 7th IB commander, the ranking NPA leader and seven of his followers decided to surrender and withdrew their allegiance to the terrorist group during programs held Wednesday afternoon at the old capitol compound in Barnagay Kalawag, Isulan, Sultan Kudarat.

The sustained efforts of the Region 12 Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (RTF-ELCAC 12), Joint Task Force Central (JTF-Central) and Sultan Kudarat Provincial Police Office (SKPPO) forced the former rebels to lay down their firearms and abandon armed struggle.

Valencia identified the leader as “Alias Simon,” platoon commander of Central Musa, Guerilla Front Musa, Far South Mindanao Region (FSMR).

He and his subordinates turned over seven assorted firearms with ammunition.

“The sustained government military and police forces in the towns of Bagumbayan and Senator Ninoy Aquino forced the rebels to surrender,” Colonel Valencia said, adding that the police, led by Sultan Kudarat police director Colonel Tom Tuzon, also played major roles that convinced the rebels to yield.

Valencia also lauded the support extended by the local government units, government agencies, nongovernment organizations and peace-loving citizens.

This year, a total of 110 communist rebel operating in the provinces of Sultan Kudarat, South Cotabato and parts of Sarangani have surrendered to the JTF Central, led by Maj. Gen. Juvymax Uy, 6th ID commander.

Major General Uy commended the efforts of the Sultan Kudarat provincial and municipal LGUs for its unwavering support in maintaining the peace and order situation of their respective areas.

“The surrender of the high ranking official manifests that they have now realized there is no future in joining the NPA as most of their members continue to return to the mainstream society,” said Maj. Gen. Uy who was confident the defeat of the CPP-NPA is irreversible. 



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