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PIA Press Release

DavNor local execs back anti-insurgency drive

by JMD Abangan

TAGUM CITY (30 June) -- Top provincial government executives of Davao del Norte are backing up President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in her campaign to wipe out insurgency in the country.

Provincial governor Gelacio Gementiza lauded PGMA and even urged her to put up additional fund "to show that the government really means business in dealing with insurgency."

The President mid this month pronounced to wipe out the almost 40-year old insurgency problem and ordered the release of P1 billion to boost military and police operations against the communists. The President said part of the P1 billion will be used for community development in the areas already being freed from insurgency.

The official publication of the Office of the Governor quoted Gementiza as saying that members of the New People's Army "will certainly face their final moment" once the intensive anti-insurgency drive of the national government gets on the ground.

The provincial government of Davao del Norte suffered great loss last year in terms of infrastructure development when alleged members of NPA burned several heavy equipment used in opening up the Davao del Norte-Bukidnon Road.

Meanwhile, Gementiza suggested that portion of the P1 billion anti-insurgency drive be used for providing livelihood to residents in areas where insurgency is a problem.

"President GMA may find it very much effective if we can use some of the funds for the livelihood of those people in the hills," he said.

On the other hand, Davao del Norte Vice governor Anthony del Rosario also agreed on the need to address the long standing insurgency problem in the country but suggested that it be done with less damage to civilian lives.

He viewed the intensive campaign against insurgency as a "sensitive issue" noting that lives of civilians will certainly be affected.

He pointed out the need to manage well such an all-out operation against communist rebels "to make sure that people are not left in the middle of the conflict."

"Saying that you want to go on all-out war is one thing, but how you actually do it is another. We need to ensure that the people are not caught in between this conflict," he said. (PIA) [top]

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