Wednesday, March 24, 2010

NPA ‘Amazon’ Receives Cash Assistance from PGMA

NPA REBEL BEFORE, PEACE ADVOCATE NOW. Major Harold M Cabunoc interviews "Ka Julie" prior to the awarding ceremonies of the Social Integration Program held at Central Bicol State University of Agriculture. PGMA personally handed out cash incentives to 28 former NPA rebels. (Photo by MARCO BALINIA)

CAMP ELIAS ANGELES, Pili, Camarines Sur – An NPA ‘amazon’ (female rebel) received cash assistance during the Social Integration Program ceremonies conducted in a state university in Pili town at 2:00 pm today (Mar 24), a military officer said.

Major Harold Cabunoc, Spokesperson of the 9th Infantry Division, said that Ka Julie was one of the 28 former rebels who received at least P.89M worth of cash incentives from the SIP of the government.

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo handed out cash incentives to the former rebels who finished the livelihood training during a ceremony held at Central Bicol State University of Agriculture in Pili town.

Ka Julie, 31, mother of four young children, was recruited to the communist movement sometime in 2004. “I started out as a messenger for the armed rebels,” she said during an interview. Four years later, she was issued an M16 rifle by Ka Elmer, the local leader of the NPA in her locality.

In 2009, Ka Julie decided to call it quits upon learning about the livelihood training and income opportunities offered by the government through the 9th Infantry Division. She narrated about the stern warning given by her comrades, “We were always told not to trust the sweet promises of the government but I realized later that this peace program is a reality,”.

Based on the SIP, former rebels will automatically receive the amount of P20,000.00 as ‘immediate cash assistance’. They also receive an additional remuneration for their surrendered firearms. An M16A1 Rifle and its equivalent is pegged at P50,000.00 while a Cal .45 M1911A1 Pistol and its variants have an equivalent reward of P20,000.00. One of the former rebels received P170,000.00 for the three assorted firearms that he turned-over.

Major General Ruperto Pabustan has directed line units to intensify information dissemination about the SIP. As of 2009, 48 rebels have surrendered to the 9th Infantry Division. Five NPA rebels have surrendered in CY 2010, the latest of which was Jerry Candelaria aka Ka Marlon who was cornered by 9ID soldiers during an encounter in Lagonoy, Camarines Sur yesterday (March 23).

1 comment: