MANILA – A total of 99 indigenous peoples (IPs) on Sunday finally returned home from Haran after being deceived by the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) of false promises.
The IPs also cited abuses while they were inside the United Church of Christ in the Philippines (UCCP) Haran compound in Davao City.
Datu Tungig, a resident of Talaingod and one of the hundred victims of "Taktikang Bakwit" of the CPP-NPA-NDF, led the ritual called “panubadtubad” inside the Haran compound before they traveled to return to communities in Talaingod, Davao del Norte after years of being captive by the Haran administrators and facilitators.
Last July 20, some 69 IPs were also rescued from UCCP Haran. Upon arrival in Talaingod, the local government unit (LGU) welcomed them and provided appropriate medical attention.
They also received food packs and enough supplies as they went back to their houses in Sitio Dulian, Barangay Palma Gil in Talaingod.
The local government of Davao City and Talaingod, together with other government agencies including the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police, for so long, took numerous efforts in rescuing the IPs brought by organizers of CPP-NPA-NDF and allied groups to UCCP Haran.
The 56th Infantry Battalion under the 1003rd Brigade of 10th Infantry Division (10ID), on the other hand, coordinated with the provincial, municipal and barangay governments and local government areas (LGAs) and other stakeholders to operationalize the Balik Community Assistance Team (BCAT) as some remaining IPs in Haran finally break free from their captors.
BCAT will be employed for any necessary assistance to the IPs such as the shelters for the families and classrooms for the students thru bayanihan.
Transition to normal life
Livelihood will also be provided to the IPs to start anew while the 10ID and Police Regional Office in Region 11 (Davao Region) will also assist them in coordinating with other government and IP officials of the community for them to have a smooth transition to a normal life free from CPP-NPA-NDF intimidations.
The 10ID will also help distribute relief goods “BOSS” (bugas, odong, sardinas ug sigarilyo) in coordination with the Davao Del Norte governor's office, Indigenous People Mandatory Representative (IPMR), LGU Talaingod and other stakeholders.
Treat meals will also be provided while they are in the municipal consolidation and processing area prior to returning back to their respective communities. For the meantime, toys for the children will be distributed.
Meanwhile, Kindemin, former Platoon Commander of Sub-Regional Guerrilla Unit (SRGU), is hopeful to see his party wife Trisha Apoga, sister of alias Macky, commanding officer of CTG's SRGU, was among the IPs rescued from Haran.
The 10ID troopers, through its broadest means of protecting the people, will always be at the service of the people whom they have sworn to serve.
All government instrumentalities are also ready to perform their respective mandates for the people, especially the most vulnerable.
The Anti-Money Laundering Council earlier issued a freeze order on four accounts being used by UCCP Haran and facilitators to feed the terrorist units of Southern Mindanao Regional Command (SMRC) while IPs in Haran suffered famine and malnutrition.
The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines. (PR)