• GILBERT P. BAYORAN
Ten self-confessed members of the New People’s Army operating in central Negros have abandoned the armed struggle and surrendered guns to the 62nd Infantry Battalion, its commander, Lt. Col. William Pesase, confirmed yesterday.
Pesase said that the rebel surrenderees are members of the Central Negros of the Komiteng Rehiyonal Negros/ Cebu/Bohol/ Siquijor, who also surrendered an M16 A1 assault rifle with magazine containing 29 ammunition, a Colt M203 40mm grenade launcher, two caliber .45 pistols with ammunition and a .357 Magnum revolver with six live bullets.
The 10 former rebels also took their oath of allegiance to the government, after being presented by Pesase to Brig. Gen. Inocencio Pasaporte, 303rd Infantry Brigade commander.
Pasaporte welcomed the decision of 10 rebels to abandon the armed struggle, stressing that they are only victims of “deceptive tactics” of the communist terrorist group.
Among those who surrendered were father and son Crasiolo “Claire” Landisa, 53, and Redgen “Anghel” Landisa, 22, Boging “Jona” Cantila, 52, who was with the NPA for 13 years, and her son Joel “Prince” Sta. Ana, 23, turned themselves in along with their four comrades, Crisel “Tadlong” Fat, 39; Jerome “Bradely” Bitongga, 36; Ricky “Bugtong” Saraguelles, 32; and Rodney “Gary” Pasatiempo, 25.
Two surrenderees are also siblings Jercel “Be-an” Gonzaga, 27, and Ronel “Robert” Gonzaga, 33.
In September this year, 16 rebels belonging to Central Negros 1 also surrendered to 62IB.*