BACOLOD City – Officials of the Philippine Army and the Philippine National Police called on Negros Occidental youths to be wary of the New People’s Army (NPA) recruitment activities in schools.
Brigadier General Benedict Arevalo, commander of the 303rd Infantry Brigade (303IB), said on Thursday he has been going around schools, including colleges and universities, to expose the deceptions and lies of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) and their political wing, the National Democratic Front.
Arevalo said that he has talked, not only to the youth but to educators and school heads as well, adding that the objective is to spare the youth from the recruitment of militant organizations that can lead to recruitment to the NPA.
“So, I ask the youth to be wary and vigilant of the dubious scheme of enticing them to join or support an underground and terrorist organization of the CPP-NPA,” the Army official appealed.
Battalions under the 303IBde in Negros Occidental, such as the 79th Infantry Battalion, based in Sagay City have also organized youth leadership summits for high school students in northern Negros as part of its Community Support Program.
The latest of which was attended by 75 students of Toboso National High School earlier this month.
Colonel Romeo Baleros, director of Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office, said the police is also initiating action to counter the CPP-NPA’s recruitment efforts and propaganda campaign in schools.
“We have a compilation of the revelations of all former rebels. Our Community Affairs Section conducts information drive using this audio-visual presentation (AVP) to make the students aware of the recruitment propaganda,” he said.
Although they have not received intelligence reports of direct recruitment of the NPA in schools, Baleros said he is certain some have penetrated the ranks of students.
“Their movement is very discreet, especially in the outskirts areas. For sure, there are those teaching in schools,” he said.
Baleros added that young people should think of their future and not allow themselves to be deceived by communist groups.
“What we show to the students is not propaganda, but the real testimonies of former rebels,” he said.
The police official said they plan to also show the AVP in shopping malls and transport terminals to make more people aware of the deception of the CPP-NPA and prevent the communist-terrorist group from enticing more recruits. (With a report from PNA/PN)