TACLOBAN CITY – The Philippine Army on Tuesday lauded a former rebel for providing vital information that led to the recent seizure of explosive devices and combat equipment of the New People’s Army (NPA) in the outskirts of Mahaplag, Leyte.
Brig. Gen. Zosimo Oliveros, commander of the Philippine Army’s 802nd Infantry Brigade, said disclosures from Ka Junior (not his real name), a former member of the Militia ng Bayan in Mahaplag town, was the key to the discovery of three improvised hand grenades and other explosive devices such as one detonating switch, four blasting caps, three pieces of plastic pipes (used as an explosive case), and other devices on May 8.
The Army also recovered three mobile phones, nine sim cards, one radio transceiver and other NPA terrorist communication equipment, bullets of high caliber gun, medical drugs, personal use, and subversive documents.
“Ka Junior surrendered to the Army because he felt bad hiding the information about the explosive device that could be used to attack soldiers and civilians,” Oliveros said in a statement.
The Army official vowed to continue to intensify the operation against the remaining members of NPA in the provinces of Biliran, Leyte, and Southern Leyte.
“I am confident that with the cooperation and assistance of all sectors, it is not far that we can reach true peace in our area. Our appeal continues to their members to surrender and return to the government while they have the chance,” Oliveros added.
The NPA, which has been waging a five-decade armed struggle against the government, is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines. (PNA)