Sobejana to NPA rebels: Don’t miss opportunity to surrender
June 05, 2021

WHOLE-OF-NATION APPROACH. AFP Chief-of-Staff General Cirilito Sobejana Jr. emphasized the importance of the convergence of different sectors of the society in bringing members of the NPA back into mainstream society. 

Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief-of-Staff General Cirilito Sobejana Jr. urged the active members of the New People’s Army (NPA) and the members of the violent extremist groups not to miss the opportunity to return to the fold of the law through the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP).

 “Ang inyong Armed Forces at ang national government ay talagang sincere sa pagtanggap doon sa mga gustong magbagong-buhay,” General Sobejana said on Thursday during his interview on “Balik-Loob sa Pagbabago,” a Task Force Balik-Loob radio-television program. 

He added that the “formula” to end this security problem is for everyone to do his/her part in the whole-of-nation approach to end the local communist armed conflict. This includes not only government agencies but also non-government institutions and civil society organizations. 

According to General Sobejana, the security sector is roughly contributing 20% in the peace building since it is only confronting the armed component of the problem. Eighty percent of the efforts come from the different civilian agencies, addressing various areas like the economic and socio-cultural aspects. 

“Kung ano man ‘yung lumabas na problema na may effect sa security ng ating bansa, ito’y matutugunan dahil tayo ay sama-samang gumagalaw patungo sa ating objective – that is peace and progress,” the AFP Chief said, noting that he is confident that the insurgency will end by 2022 because of the active participation and cooperation of the public. 

The AFP chief believes that the public should be aware of the situation in the fight against local communist armed conflict, because security is a shared responsibility. He further emphasized the roles of the parents and teachers in ending terrorism in our country, saying that good governance should be practiced, not only within the government but also within the family and the academe. 

“While your soldiers kill terrorists, you in the academe, should kill terrorism. Kung effective kayo sa pagsugpo sa terorismo, walang terorista. Ang inyong Armed Forces ay suporta nalang sa pag-unlad ng ating bayan, rather than going to war,” General Sobejana said, assuring the public that the security sector is doing its job to protect the law-abiding citizens of the country. 

“We do not fight because we hate those who are in front of us; we fight because we love the people behind us,” he said, reiterating his call for the members of the communist terrorist group to return to mainstream society. “Kung kayo ay nag-iisip na mag bagong-buhay na, handa po ang inyong Armed Forces, ang inyong gobyerno para tanggapin kayo.”

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