401st Infantry Brigade Commander Colonel Gregory M. Cayetano said “We are very much happy to welcome these former rebels who have finally decided to return to the folds of the law. We are very thankful to them that they gave up their arms and start living a normal life back to their loved ones and families.”
“We are thankful that these former rebels have left the mountains and returned to the folds of the law. Let us put an end to poverty and stop the war. This is the essence of “Bayanihan,” an advocacy of working hand-in-hand,” 4th Infantry Division Chief Major Geneneral Ricardo R. Visaya said in the ceremony titled “Pagbabalik Loob III”.
According to Philippine Army Public Affairs, out of 97 returnees, 33 are members of New People’s Army, 64 are from underground Barrio Revolutionary Commmittees also known as Militia ng Bayan.
“You can now start a new life with your loved ones and be a productive citizen in your respective communities. Your AFP here in Eastern Mindanao is sincere in its mandate in protecting the people. The CPP-NPA-NDF are now into extortion activities, arson, attack to civilians and civilian properties. In other words, they are called as bandits or anti-development group. As I said before, we are confident of these snowballs of surrender in Eastern Mindanao area of responsibility,” Eastern Mindanao Command Commander Lt. General Ricardo Rainier G. Cruz III said.