ILOILO – Two members of the New People’s Army (NPA) voluntarily surrendered to the police with the help of Gov. Arthur Defensor Sr.
Twenty-year-old Ka Princess, who also went by the nom de guerre Ka Nemia, and 21-year-old boyfriend Ka MJ Coda, was safely picked up by a team from the Iloilo Police Provincial Office (IPPO) led by director Police Colonel Marlon Tayaba in Barangay Pali, Mandurriao, Iloilo City at around 9:45 a.m. on Wednesday.
Through emissaries, the rebels asked Defensor to facilitate their surrender. The governor contacted Tayaba and gave instructions.
The rebels, who said their group operated in the central municipalities of the province, would be availing themselves of the national government’s Enhanced-Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP).
“They told us they were going hungry in the mountains and they wanted to have a normal life,” said Police Major Jonathan Pinuela of the IPPO.
Ka MJ said it was her girlfriend who first joined the underground movement one year and three months ago. After three months he decided to join, too, so he could be with her.
A “good news” was how Lieutenant Colonel Joel Benedict Batara of the Philippine Army’s 61st Infantry Battalion described the surrender of the two rebels.
“We encourage rebels to surrender and avail themselves of livelihood programs of the government,” said Batara./PN