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Former NPA rebels in Capiz receive cash aid from gov’t

ROXAS CITY, Capiz (PIA) -- A total of 16 former rebels (FRs) received financial assistance from the government through the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) of Executive Order No. 70, series of 2018, institutionalizing the whole-of-nation approach to pursue long-lasting peace in the country.

Five out of 16 FRs were former members of the New People’s Army, while the 11 were Militia ng Bayan or supporters of the NPA rebels.

Distribution of financial assistance to 13 FRs at the Capiz Provincial Government with PSWDO E-CLIP focal person Joerine Tan, Phil. Army 12IB commanding officer Lt. Col. Vicel Jan Garsuta, DILG-Capiz Director Cherryl Tacda, and Gov. Fredenil Castro (from left to right). (Photo courtesy of Capiz Provincial Government Communications Group Facebook page)

The former regular NPAs received a total of P65,000 each. The supporters, on the other hand, received P15,000 each as part of the government support as they reintegrated back into society. 

Provincial Social Welfare Development E-CLIP focal person Joerine Tan said that the FRs mostly stated that they would use the assistance received from the government as an investment for their chosen livelihood. 

“Some of them said that they will use the money to buy a motorcycle because most of them are living in the upland areas. Aside from personal use, they will also use it as ‘habal-habal’ as a source of their income. While some of them will invest it on poultry farming, and others on abaca farming,” Tan said in Hiligaynon.

Tan also shared that one of the recipients is Alias Boy who has been a rebel for almost 30 years. 

“Alias Boy said that both of his parents were also members of the underground movement which is why during his childhood years he thought that it was just normal to be part of the group,” Tan added.

Tan also said that because most of the FRs in the upland areas were just encouraged by the group and just thought it was alright, their awareness about the government is not the same compared to those living in lowland areas. 

Most of the FRs are from Tapaz and Jamindan town, while some are from Cuartero. 

PSWDO E-CLIP focal person Joerine Tan during one of her interviews with the FRs. (Photo courtesy of the Capiz Provincial Government Communications Group Facebook page)

Moreover, Tan revealed that there was also a couple who surrendered back to the government because they wanted to give a better life for their children.  

“They said that they realized that as they get older, they can no longer handle the hardship of living in the mountainous area and they also want their children to enjoy and live a normal life,” Tan added. 

The E-CLIP is an integrated reintegration program of the national government for the FRs and their family members to address their economic, social, and psychological rehabilitation needs. (AGP/PLF/PIA Capiz)

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Pia Lorraine Francisco

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Region 6

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