18 rebel returnees in DavOr, Sarangani receive assistance

THIRTEEN former rebels who surrendered to the different units of 701st Infantry Brigade in Davao Oriential received cash assistance under the Comprehensive Local Integrated Program (CLIP) of the local government of Davao Oriental last week.

Meanwhile, five former members of New People’s Army (NPA) who surrendered to 73rd Infantry Battalion (73IB) received a total of ₱325,000 in financial and livelihood assistance from the Comprehensive Local Integration Program (CLIP) of Sarangani province during a short ceremony held in Manny Pacquiao hotel in General Santos City last week.

Capt. Andrew Linao, the civil-military operations officer of 701st Infantry Brigade, told TIMES that each 13 rebel returnee from the halfway house of the local government of Davao Oriental received P65,000 cash.

The surrenderees underwent three months worth of training on alternative learning system, livelihood, gardening and other psychosocial and government interventions.

“We also toured them on the livelihood program of Tesda and livelihood projects on provincial agriculture, specifically livestock and vegetable production,” he said.

The halfway house of the local government of Davao Oriental, together with 701st Infantry Brigade, caters to the needs of rebel returnees. Linao said this is the first of its kind in the country.

He also said that by second week of July they will cater to the second batch, comprising 20 rebel returnees.

The Happy Home started back in 2013 under the leadership of Brig. Gen. Benjamin Madrigal in collaboration with the local government of Davao Oriental.

In Sarangani, each returnee was handed P15,000 as immediate assistance and P50,000 as livelihood aid.

“The immediate and livelihood assistance awarded to the former rebels is a successful collaborative effort of the provincial government of Sarangani Province and 73IB in support to the unit’s mission and government’s effort of permanent and peaceful closure of all armed conflict in the country,” Lt. Col. Marion Angcao, commander of 73rd IB, said.

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