Davao City- Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Gen. Andres Centino visited and congratulated members of the 1003rd Infantry “Raptor” Brigade for dismantling a sub-regional committee of the communist New People’s Army (NPA), the 10th Infantry Division (10ID) said Friday.
Last month, the Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom) confirmed that they have dismantled the Sub-Regional Committee 5, Southern Mindanao Regional Committee (SRC 5, SMRC), after 12 of its top-ranking leaders surrendered on January 13.
In a statement, the 10ID said Centino visited the 1003rd Brigade on February 16 and congratulated the units under the Eastmincom for their campaign of dismantling SRC 5 and the neutralization of NPA leaders Jorge Madlos alias Ka Oris and Menardo Villanueva alias Bok, among others.
“I make it a point to reach out, to see for myself the situation of our troops. As a commander and Chief of Staff, I take it upon myself to personally rally our troops and lead from the front,” Centino said.
He also encouraged the troops not to let their guard down to produce a decisive result in defeating the communist group as only five months left before President Rodrigo Duterte steps down in June.
Lt. Gen. Greg Almerol, the Eastmincom commander, said the surrenderers suffered defeat during an encounter in the hinterlands of Sitio Minalong, Barangay Kahusayan, Kitaotao, Bukidnon.
The surrenderers included Ida Marie Montero alias Mandy, Secretary and member of Komiteng Tagapagpaganap/Komiteng Kalihiman and Finance Officer; Renato Lubguban alias Jose, Deputy Secretary and Commanding Officer of Sub-Regional Operational Command; Lito Taluwa alias Lito, Acting Commanding Officer; Enrico Caramat alias Marco, Political Instructor; Rudy Saballa alias Egor, Military Adviser and former commanding officer of the dismantled Guerrilla Front 56.
Others who yielded were Lauret Tumbasay alias Wena, medic; Claudia Balite alias Claudia, Giyang Pulitika; Analisa Panduma alias Analiza, Supply Officer; Gerome Chucas alias Rob, Team Leader; and Milisyang Bayan members namely Dioneng Mansugal alias Bansilan; Catalino Mansugal alias Wolok; and Simo Mansugal alias Batugal.
The Communist Party of the Philippines-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.
The National Democratic Front has been formally designated as a terrorist organization by the Anti-Terrorism Council on June 23, 2021, citing it as “an integral and inseparable part” of the CPP-NPA created in April 1973.
(Source: Philippine News Agency)