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PIA Press Release

3 NPAs surrender in Abra

by Maritess Beņas

LAGANGILANG, Abra (20 October) -- Three New People's Army rebels from Abra voluntarily surrendered to the 41st Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army based in Barangay Tagodtod, this town.

All three rebel returnees received a total of P56,000.00 as cash reward for the firearms they surrendered.

Lt. Col. Raul V. Bautista, commanding officer of the Battalion handed the cash reward to the three rebel returnees during a simple surrender rites held at the 5th Infantry Division pf the Philippine Army in Gamu, Isabela last October 8.

The rebel returnees are identified as Rafael Gunday, a.k.a. Sonny from Brgy. Kilong-Olao, Boliney; Randy Sapongen a.k.a. Allen from Brgy. Ampaliok, Luba; and Antonio Pingian, a.k.a Anton from Manabo.

Gunday received the amount of P2,000 for turning-in his Springfield rifle; Sapongen got P18,000 for his M16 rifle; and Pingian was given P36,000 for turning in two rifles, an M16 and an M14.

The three RRs decided to surrender after they have experienced intolerable hardships, hunger and demoralization in the mountains. They claim that life in the mountains has become to difficult due to lack of food and the unrelenting combat operations of the government troops. They also said that they have proven the sincerity of the 41st IB as they fulfilled everything that they promised to the people in the community. They expressed their gratitude and appreciation to the Phil. Army's sincerity in their service delivery most especially in performing their job as the true soldiers and protectors of the people's freedom and liberty.

Bautista described the surrender of the three RRs as an indication of development in the efforts of the Phil. Army to pursue peace and order by convincing the communist terrorists to abandon the armed struggle and live a normal life with their families and love ones.

Meanwhile, the 41st IB continues to expand their operations in other barangays which are threatened by communist terrorist groups. Last October 6, the Battalion carried out its regular information and education campaign against terrorism cum medical/dental mission in Brgy. Bai, a very remote barangay of Lagayan which has always been exposed to all sorts of terror groups.

A total of 20 patients underwent tooth extraction and the others in the barangay had their medical check up and were given free medicines, too.

The barangay folks led by Brgy. Captain Leonida Guyang thanked the 41st IB for bring their troops to their place despite the bad weather conditions.

Aside from the medical/dental services, the Battalion also went there last September 9, to do a massive tree planting. A total of 500 seedlings of trees of various species were planted in their watershed area, after which they also did a water system project there where the people could get potable water supply. (PIA-Abra) [top]

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