Gov’t gives former rebels P1.95M
MANILA, Philippines–Thirty-nine former communist rebels in Davao City have received a total of P1.95 million from the government under the Comprehensive Local Integration Program (CLIP), the Armed Forces of the Philippines said on Thursday.
The rebel returnees, who wore “I Love Peace” T-shirts, received P50,000 each during a ceremony attended by Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte at the Grand Men Seng Hotel on Dec. 9.
“Never again support or participate in any form of armed struggle, especially now that you already have a reason to start a changed life, a good one,” Duterte said in his message to the former rebels.
Duterte has reportedly offered the returnees a housing resettlement area in Barangay (village) Los Amigos, about 30 kilometers from the city.
CLIP focuses on the integration of members of the Communist Party of the Philippines, New People’s Army and National Democratic Front, who decide to abandon armed struggle and rejoin mainstream society.
Under CLIP, rebels who surrender to the government with their firearms are given monetary assistance of P15,000 and livelihood assistance of P50,000. Additional training and support are also accorded them and their dependents.
Implementation of CLIP is based on Joint Memorandum Circular dated May 15, 2014, between the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process.
Maj. Gen. Eduardo Año, 10th Infantry Division (ID) commander, lauded the local government and subordinate units of 10th ID for jointly facilitating the release of the assistance to the former rebels.
“These former rebels are our brothers, they were just victims, deceived and betrayed by the lawless armed group,” Año said.
In a report presented during the Regional Peace and Order Council meeting, a total of 138 former rebels had surrendered to the different units under the 10th ID and will be given government assistance.
Also present during the awarding of the cash assistance were Maria Luisa Bermudo, Davao City Social Services and Development Office head; Merilo Limbaro, head of the DILG-Davao City, and Wilhelm Suyko, regional director of DILG-XI.–Cynthia D. Balana
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