9 ex-rebels benefit from CLIP

THE IMPLEMENTATION of the Comprehensive Local Integration Program (CLIP) has benefited nine former members of the New People’s Army (NPA) who have surrendered to the government.

Capt. Jayrald Ternio, civil-military operation (CMO) officer of 71st Infantry Battalion, told TIMES that the returnees received a total livelihood cash assistance of P585,000 during the turnover at the Compostela Valley provincial capitol in Barangay Cabidianan, Nabunturan on Monday.

Ternio said the former rebels have been optimistic of starting a new chapter in their lives after surrendering to the military.

Among the beneficiaries was a 19-year old man who claimed he decided to surrender after seeing a former comrade benefiting from the program and enjoying a life of being free.

“I realized that the government has a real program for us, and he wasn’t harmed by the soldiers,” the young man said in visayan. “That’s the reason I surrendered, and also because I wanted to be with my family.

The former rebel said he’s planning to use the money to plant vegetables.

CLIP is a program intended for rebels who decide to turn themselves to the folds of the law.

Present during the awarding ceremonies were Josephine Frasco, Provincial Social Worker Department head; Placido Alcomendras, executive assistant to the governor; Lt. Col. Ronaldo Valdez, 10th CMO battalion commander; and Lt. Col. Davice Christopher Mercado, 71st Infantry battalion commander.

Brig. Gen. Macairog Alberto, 1001st brigade commander, said the military will continue to help implement the CLIP program and facilitate the surrender of those rebels who want to have a better life.

“We will continue to protect the people from NPA atrocities but if they [NPA] wanted to surrender and live a normal life, we will assist them in availing the CLIP,” Alberto said.

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