35 former NPA rebels given P700,000 in cash assistance
aga City (23 February) -- The government's Social-Integration Program (SIP) for former rebels has distributed last February 12 cash assistance to 35 beneficiaries P20,000 each or a total of P700,000 as immediate cash assistance.
Atty. Reuben Lingating, SIP program manager, who represented Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Avelino I. Razon Jr., said the cash grant will enable the former rebels to have their own livelihood that would generate income for their families and make them productive citizens again.
Lingating led the awarding ceremony held in the Camarines Sur State Agricultural College. Also in attendance were Maj. Gen. Jeffrey S. Sodusta; Chief Supt Cecilio B. Calleja Jr. representing Chief Supt Paterno P. Bangui; Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Regional Director Blandino M. Maceda representing Camarines Sur Gov. Luis Raymond F. Villafuerte, Fred Perdon representing Asec. Chito Monzon of the Office of the Presidential Adviser for Bicol and SIP Action Officer for Regions IV and V Charleston Tan.
The former rebels, 30 men and five women, came from Camarines Sur, Camarines Norte, Albay, Masbate, and Sorsogon.
They have undergone four-day orientation during which a seminar-workshop was conducted to brief them on other opportunities such as livelihood, employment, training, and education assistance.
Aside from the P20,000 cash, the SIP will also give each rebel returnee capital assistance of P50,000 in the form of farm implements, working animals, and sari-sari store goods.
Likewise, access to basic social services and payment for surrendered firearms, explosives, and ammunition will be provided under the program.
A rebel returnee who surrenders an M-16 or M-14 rifle, for example, will receive P50,000.
A scheme by which the former rebels and their dependents are provided a set of interventions to facilitate their integration into the mainstream of society, the SIP is guided by the principle of convergence and cooperation among local government units (LGUs), government agencies, non-government organizations (NGOs), and the community.
OPAPP's partners in the multi-sectoral program include the Department of Education (DepEd), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), National Food Authority (NFA), Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Science and Technology (DoST), Department of Health (DoH), Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE), Commission on Higher Education (CHEd), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Philippine National Police (PNP), DILG and PIA. (OPPAP/PIA) [top]