THE return to the fold of the law of 18,433 former rebels belonging to communist terror groups (CTGs) is a welcome development in the fight against insurgency in the country.
Under the national government’s “whole of nation” integration program, the surrenderers, including 92 “chid warriors,” are now enjoying normal life, according to the Philippine Army.
Maj/Gen. Ernesto C. Torres, commander of the Army’s 10th Infantry Division in Southern Mindanao, said there’s a continuous trend of rebels abandoning the communist movement.
He said government efforts have effectively unmasked the pointless revolution being waged by the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF).
Several countries, including the United States, United Kingdom, Australia and Canada have tagged the CPP and NPA as terrorist organizations.
Since 2016, the government has also trimmed done the number of communist guerrilla fronts from 23 to only six, Torres said during last Monday’s virtual presser of the controversial NTF-ELCAC
Of course, NTF-ELCAC is the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict. The government has also closed down a number of schools established by the CPP-NPA-NDF in Mindanao.
Torres said these educational institutions, which allegedly recruited young indigenous people, were replaced by Department of Education-accredited schools.
Under the government’s program, the military’s role is to bridge former rebels to organizations supported by local government units (LGUs) and other state agencies.
The government deserves the support of the public as it tries to address the problem of communist insurgency in this impoverished Southeast Asian nation of more than 109 million people.