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PIA Press Release

19-IB gears up to obliterate remnants of North Leyte NPA front

Tacloban City (February 2) -- In order to effectively fulfill President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's directive and its mission to totally eradicate the remnants of CPP-NPA in Leyte, the 19th Infantry Battalion of the 8th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army, recently conducted a series of training to its personnel.

Lt. Col Henry M. Bumiltac, commanding officer of the 19th Infantry (Commando) Battalion, led the training of the personnel from January 19 to 26, 2009, at Barangay Aguiting, Kananga, Leyte, 2nd Lt Gabriel C. Aranez, Public Information Officer, said.

The personnel of the Commandos were intensely trained in various military endeavors with emphasis on the areas of information gathering, surveillance, agent acquisition, media relations, news writing, community relations, public information, among others.

Lt Col. Bumiltac informed that the main objective in the conduct of training is to equip the soldiers with the knowledge they will need in the performance of their assigned duties.

This is the initiative of the unit in order to improve its services to the Leytenos, Lt. Col. Bumiltac said.

No matter how noble, however, this vision will not come true if the soldiers in the field lacks the necessary skills, commitment and perseverance, Lt. Co. Bumiltac added.

The unit has recognized that the current trend of the society requires a professional and well motivated soldiers bonded by moral principles.

Lt. Col. Bumiltac further said, that the training conducted is envisioned to obliterate the remnants of North Leyte Front and to give the Leytenos the peace and development every Filipino sought.

Considered a milestone in the pursuit of genuine and lasting peace in the community, the 19th Infantry Battalion, in coordination with the provincial Government of Leyte and other national line agencies, has been instrumental in paving the way for 32 former rebels to avail on December 3, 2008, of the Social Integration Program of the Arroyo Administration which is being implemented by the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process.

The Social Integration Program is a process whereby former rebels and their dependents are provided a set of interventions to facilitate their integration into mainstream society. The program provides an increased remuneration for surrendered firearms, explosives and ammunition.

With the promulgation of Administrative Order No. 172 signed by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo on March 23, 2007, the National Committee on Social Integration was created to implement the Social Integration Program. (PIA 8) [top]

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