Bgy New Visayas, Sto Tomas, Davao del Norte – A minor female member of New People’s Army (NPA), of Guerilla Front 34, voluntarily surrendered without firearms to Patil Patrol Base of 60th Infantry Battalion at Brgy Gupitan, Kapalong, Davao del Norte at 3:00 pm of April 2.
In her testimony, Ana, (not her true name), 17 years old from Ata Tribe, a resident of Prk 1, Sitio Muling, Brgy Gupitan, Kapalong, Davao del Norte, decided to surrender for she can no longrer endure the hardships coupled with hunger that she experienced in all the tactical operations where she was involved and the constant on-the-run while evading government troops in the mountains.
Her participation in the attempted murder of her uncle and hostage-taking of her two(2) female cousins to facilitate the said attempt, made her realized the inhuman side of the movement she was in, aside from the previous kidnappings she was able to participate.
Worst of all, the declaration of her fellow rebel that she was forced to join and must stay to fullfill the later’s sexual need, had gotten into her nerve. “Pangunsumo lang daw ko.” Ana uttered trembling with tears. “Nisulod lang bya gyud ko kay gibundakan man ko ug AK-47 nga pusil sa atubangan. Kinsay dili mahadlok ana’? Paubanon daw ko sa NPA nga gibuya sa akong papa sa akoa.” (I was just forced to join when the NPA bandits stroke an AK-47, butt on the ground, in front of me. Who will not be afraid of that? They said that I must go with the NPA who had prearranged with my father, to have me as a wife.) Ana further revealed.
Her surrender was made possible through the help of Amy Mier, her former employer prior to her recruitment in the movement, who coordinated with 60IB. She allegedly joined the NPA on December last year and left the group last March 25 this year. She said that being a young female, she was not able to endure the hunger and hardships in the mountains while evading government forces.
LTC LLEWELLYN BINASOY, commander, 60th Infantry Battalion brought and endorsed the victim to Ms Arlene Semblante, Head of Provincial Social Welfare and Development in Davao del Norte. She was also taken to Carmen District Hospital (CDH) for medical checkup and Stress Debreifing.
“We are happy to have saved another life, especially the young soul of Ana. Ibalik natin sya sa kanyang pamilya at tulungan natin, kasama ang lahat ng ahensya ng gobyerno na maaring makatulong para sa bagong buhay ng isa pang anak kasama ang kanyang pamilya.” COL BUENAVENTURA C PASCUAL, 1003RD (RAPTOR) Brigade Commander, said in an interview as he expresses again the Brigade’s commitment to help and protect our less fortunate constituents, especially our Lumad brothers and sisters who had been deceived and are constantly exploited by the New People’s Army to advance a greedy and inhuman cause. COL PASCUAL added.