BUTUAN CITY – A total of 96 communist New People’s Army (NPA) rebels in Agusan del Norte have surrendered during the third quarter of this year, the Provincial Information Office (PIO) said Tuesday.

The PIO said the figure was based on data provided by the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office (PSWDO).

“The provincial government, working with the other stakeholders, is strengthening its Adopt-A-Former Rebel program to support their reintegration into their families and communities,” the PIO said.

Under the program's "structured pathway," the provincial government is tasked to collaborate with the local government units, private organizations, and civil society organizations to facilitate the reintegration of former NPA combatants.

Governor Maria Angelica Rosedell Amante said the program intends to help the former rebels get jobs and livelihood opportunities.

The PIO said since last year, 214 NPA rebels have surrendered in the province as the different line agencies of the government and other stakeholders intensified the campaigns to end the local communist armed conflict.

Of the total number, 112 were provided with jobs, including being workers at the provincial government and other line agencies, security guards, and construction companies.

“Some of the 112 beneficiaries opted to enlist themselves with the Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit,” the PIO said. (PNA)