Former Rebels Receive 2.1M Aid from the Goverment

PLACER, Surigao del Norte – Former Rebels who surrendered in Surigao del Norte were given 2.1M aid by the goverment in a simple awarding ceremony held at Provincial Capitol, Surigao City, Wednesday morning, April 14.

The 11 beneficiaries received financial and livelihood assistance amounting to 65,000 and additional reintegration assistance amounting to 21,000 each while those who brought along their firearms in their return to the folds of the law were given doubled amount of renumeration for their surrendered weapons.

Meanwhile, the other member agencies of Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (ECLIP) Committee able provided assistance such as foodpacks, hygiene kits and non-monetary items for the former rebels.

In the testimony of @Dante, 26 , single, he expressed his heartfelt thanks to the goverment for giving them another chance to start anew. He said that the assistance provided by the government will be of big help for them and for his companions to reboot their disrupted lives. He also added that they are all remorseful about the decisions they made from the past that led them to be involved in the violent struggle.

Aside from the financial aid, @Dante said they are all grateful for the soldiers who did an effort to assist them contratry to the indoctrination of the CTG when they were still in the armed movement.

In the statement of Hon. Francisco “Lalo” Matugas, Governor and Chairman of Surigao del Norte ECLIP Committee, he warmly welcomed the return of the former rebels. He said that the provincial government will also provide additional assistance through trainings, job opportunities and community-based income generating activities.

According to Brig. Gen. George L Banzon, Commander of 901st Infantry (Fight’Em) Brigade, he said that the simple ceremony manifested the sincere commitment of the government in the quest for peace. He further said that it shows us that the goverment embarks on programs that will give us long and lasting peace.

“The ECLIP is intended for our lost brothers who are victims of CTG deception. The program intends to assist them to be back in the mainstream- a chance to live in a normal condition away from the danger of violence and struggle”, he said

He also stressed that the government never closes its door for those who want to surrender. Furthermore, Brig. Gen. Banzon gave assurance that the 901st Brigade in partnership other government units and agencies will always be ready to assist those who will surrender.

“We are hoping that this may serve as a reminder for them that there still a lot of hope if they will choose the path of peace. They are always welcome and we will never close our doors for them”, the Brigade Commander said.

At present, a total of 123 former rebels in the 901st Brigade AOR were already enrolled and received assistance from Enhanced Comprehensive Integration Program.

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