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CAMP ELIAS ANGELES, Pili, Camarines Sur-With the aim to institutionalize a more efficient and effective CAFGU Active Auxiliary (CAA) management system, the Army in Bicol formally activated the 9th Division CAA Affairs Unit (9DCAU) Monday, November 11.

MGEN FERNANDO T TRINIDAD AFP, Commander of 9th Infantry Division officiated the unfurling of the unit colors, the Army's traditional way of recognizing the birth of a new unit and commencement of its given mission.

Gen. Trinidad expressed his confidence with 22IB's former Commanding Officer, LTC EDUARDO MONJARDIN, who will also be heading the 9DCAU, along with his assurance of the Division's full support with the unit's plans and programs.

"Tiwala ako na ang iyong posisyon na ito ay magagampanan mo ng buong husay katulad ng iyong pinamalas bilang pinuno ng Valor Battalion. Batid kong ang pagsisimula ng isang unit ay hindi madali ngunit sa pamamagitan ng ating pagtutulungan, lahat ay kaya nating mapagtagumpayan," Gen. Trinidad added.

[With your position, I am confident that you will perform excellently just as when you were the head of the Valor Battalion. I know that it is not easy to start a new unit but if we will work hand in hand, everything is achievable.]

Aside from the activation of the 9DCAU, 22nd Infantry (Valor) Battalion (22IB) which previously caters the management of CAA's will be reverted to its original function as a Maneuver Battalion. Preparations for 22IB’s subsequent deployment are being undertaken to strengthen 9ID’s intensified focused military operations in Bicol region. Meanwhile, a Sniper Company will also be activated to further enhance 9ID’s capability in addressing all forms of domestic threats and in securing the people and their communities in the region.

Moreover, with Regional Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (RTF-ELCAC) 5 or Task Force Katuninongan asin Kauswagan where all local government agencies and local government units are working together in addressing the armed conflict, these new units will be very instrumental in the agressive campaign of the Army in Bicol to curb the atrocities and illegal activities hurled by Communist Terrorist Group (CTG).                   

 

 

CAMP ELIAS ANGELES, Pili, Camarines Sur-An incumbent Barangay Chairman who is a member of the armed rebels was killed in an armed encounter between government troops and communist terrorists in Milagros town, Masbate province around 6 o'clock in the morning Wednesday, November 6.

 

Joint elements of 2nd Infantry Battalion (2IB) and 2nd Masbate Provincial Mobile Force Company (2MPMFC) are conducting combat operations in response to a report about the presence of the members of the Communist Terrorist Group (CTG) in Barangay San Antonio when they encountered an undetermined number of terrorists who are part of Komiteng Seksyon sa Platoon 1 (KSPN 1), Larangan 2, Komiteng Probinsya 4 of Bicol Regional Party Commitee (BRPC).

 

Barangay Chairman Wolfert Dalanon AKA Ompong died on the spot while one M16 rifle, M653 rifle, carbine and a laptop were recovered in the encounter site after the one hour and twenty minutes firefight.

 

It was learned that Dalanon, who is an active member of the CTG, had been supporting the terrorists' illegal activities and recruitment schemes.

 

In fact, initial reports revealed that the terrorists were having their training in his Barangay for several days now and today was supposed to be the graduation when the clash broke out.

 

Hot pursuit operation against the enemies who were seen scampering towards different directions is still on-going.

 

Joint Task Force Bicolandia (JTFB) under MGEN FERNADO T TRINIDAD AFP ordered the troops to tighten the security measures being laid down in the area.

 

Gen. Trinidad once again reminded the public officials to uphold their oath of office and give their constituents an honest and untainted service.

 

He underscored that giving CTG's any form of support and joining their useless cause will only result in bloodshed and endanger the innocent civilians.

 

Furthermore, JTFB encouraged the rebels to surrender and rally with the government's campaign to end insurgency especially now that Regional Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (RTF-ELCAC) or Task Force Katuninongan asin Kauswagan is more than prepared to assist them in reestablishing their lives outside the armed movement.

 

 

CAMP ELIAS ANGELES, Pili, Camarines Sur-“Stay alive.”

 

MGEN FERNANDO T TRINIDAD AFP, Commander of 9th Infantry Spear Division (9ID) made this strong message during the send-off ceremony of almost 200 new soldiers at the parade ground of Camp Elias Angeles, Friday, October 25.

 

A total of 191 privates who graduated just last October 3 were assigned to the different units of 9ID in Bicol and Mindanao together with the three new second lieutenants of the Officer Candidate School.

 

Gen. Trinidad reiterated his message during the graduation of the Candidate Soldier Course Mabalasik and Masiklab Classes that the rigorous training they went through is a preparation for times like this when they would finally be deployed to serve the country and its people.

 

“You stay alive. Gamitin niyo yong mga natutunan niyo habang nagti-training kayo rito at sisiguraduhin ko sainyong malayo ang inyong mararating,” Gen. Trinidad said during his speech.

[You stay alive. Use the knowledge you gained during your training here and I am telling you, you will soar high.]

 

He said that the send-off ceremony is a symbol that they would finally embrace the challenges brought along by the responsibilities they sworn to as members of the Philippine Army.

 

Private Glenn Garfin from Camarines Norte whose first assignment is in Jolo, Sulu under the 11th Infantry Division (11ID) said that he is excited to perform excellently with his new colleagues.

 

Aside from the hassle of going home because Mindanao is quite far, he confidently say that he is not afraid of going to the region known for the presence of more armed groups and lawless elements.

 

Garfin underscored that long before their deployment, they knew that facing hard and dangerous battles are part of the job.

 

As new members of Spear Troopers, 9ID believes that this added force will contribute to the fulfilment of the campaign towards security, peace and development of the government.

 

 

CAMP ELIAS ANGELES, Pili, Camarines Sur-At least one hundred one rebel returnees in Cawayan town, Masbate province received an immediate cash assistance from the government during the successful Peace Caravan at the Cawayan Municipal Gym in Barangay Poblacion Wednesday, October 30.

 

Aside from the said financial assistance, most of these former rebels who decided to return to the folds of the law and join the mainstream of our society will also be enrolled in the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) where additional livelihood, educational and other forms of assistance will be given to them. 

 

Municipal Mayor Edgar Condor considered the event as a breakthrough in the government's campaign to resolve the insurgency especially in their province which has long been a stronghold of communist terrorists.

 

Furthermore, he urged his constituents to actively support their newly created Municipal Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (MTF-ELCAC) and the numerous programs it is set to launch. 

 

The peace caravan is the first convergence in the said province which was attended by at least four thousand five hundred residents who pledged to rally with the government's campaign to push the armed conflict to its natural death. 

 

As a symbol of its strong commitment to Executive Order No. 70 (EO 70) or the Whole-of-Nation Approach, Mayor Condor, the Battalion Commander of 2nd Infantry Battalion (2IB) LTC NAPOLEON G PABON JR and other local officials signed the MTF-ELCAC commitment wall before a symbollic releasing of doves.

 

With the presence of the Commander of Joint Task Force Bicolandia (JTFB) MGEN FERNANDO T TRINIDAD AFP, Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Regional Director Anthony Nuyda, Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Regional Director Arnel Garcia, Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) Regional Director Engr. Arnel Dizon and National Housing Authority (NHA) Regional Director Alberto Perfecto and the representatives of other government agencies, 21 Barangay Captains attended the executive meeting where they were able to raise and discuss various concerns in their respective areas.

 

Meanwhile, Gen. Trinidad encouraged the local chief executives to be on board and help President Rodrigo Duterte in our collective goal to resolve the insurgency before his term ends.

 

"Wala pong iuunlad ang isang lugar kung may problema tayo sa seguridad. So ang seguridad po ay hindi lang problema ng militar, hindi lang po problema ng pulis, hindi lang po problema ng gobyerno, problema po nating lahat yan. Kung hindi po tayo magtutulungan, hindi po matatapos 'tong problema na 'to," he added.

 

[Development will not be achieved in a place where there is security problem. Security is not just the problem of the military, it is not just the problem of the police, it is not just the problem of the government, it is everybody's problem. If we will not work hand in hand, this problem will not be solved.]

 

According to MGen Trinidad, snail-paced development is observed in places where there is a presence of the Communist Terrorist Group (CTG) that is why he discouraged the public officials and other entities to provide any form of support to the CTG members and their ill motives to the community.

 

He also reassured the people of Cawayan of the JTFB's intensified operations to preempt the armed rebels atrocities and continuing support to promote socio-economic programs and services in the province.

 

After the executive meeting, the residents were able to receive different services which includes free medical and dental check-up among others.

 

Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) offered free trainings while other government agencies present also conducted information dissemination about their existing programs.

 

On the same day, the municipality also signed a resolution declaring communist terrorists as persona non-grata.

 

 

CAMP ELIAS ANGELES, Pili, Camarines Sur-At least thirty Indigenous People (IP) leaders participated in the Regional Indigenous People Empowerment Summit (RIPES) last October 14-15 in Peñafrancia Resort, Barangay Carolina, Naga City.

 

The event was an initiative of Joint Task Force Bicolandia (JTFB) in partnership with National Commission for Indigenous People (NCIP) Regional Office V.

 

During the 2-day summit, participants who are mostly from the tribes of Manide and Agta in Camarines Sur, Camarines Norte, Albay and Sorsogon were given lectures about insurgency, importance of peace and order in community development, farming, entrepreneurship, agri-preneurship and education.

 

IPs were also reoriented about their four bundles of rights which includes the right to ancestral domain, right to self-governance and empowerment, right to cultural integrity and right to social justice and human rights.

 

RIPES coincided with the celebration of IPRA (Indigenous Peoples Rights Act of 1997) month.

 

For the past years, IPs became one of the most vulnerable sectors of society in terms of Communist Terrorist Group's (CTG) infiltrations.

 

Being an Indigenous People Mandatory representative (IPMR), it paved the way for Elsa,

a Manide from Capalonga town in Camarines Norte province to be part of an eye-opening event.

 

According to her, she only finished grade 7 because her family cannot afford to send her to school whose only source of income is through "copra" or smoked coconut meat.

 

As a member of indigenous people (IP) community, Elsa knew the importance of education which she dreamed of giving her children.

 

She felt lucky to have been chosen as an IPMR or the tribe's version of councilor.

 

IPMRs are actively involved in legislative matters and receive a monthly compensation.

 

No less than the NCIP Bicol Regional Director Lee Arroyo graced the closing program who underscored that the event is very significant in informing and educating the IPs about their entitlements and privileges.

 

"Ini po gabos simbag po ini duman sa apat nindong diretso. Bako lang an AFP, kami nagkaburunyog, nagkasararo, nagtatarabangan na may saro kaming papadumanan asin an samong thrust para sa improvement, sa ikakarahay kan mga tribo sa komunidad," she added.

 

[This is in response to your four bundles of rights. Not only the AFP, we harmonize, unite and help each other towards one goal and our thrust is for the improvement, for the betterment of the tribes in the community.]

 

JTFB under MGEN FERNANDO T TRINIDAD AFP said that thru the summit, IPs were given the opportunity to learn about national security and made aware of the services of the government which are intended exclusively for them.

 

Furthermore, with the continuous efforts of the government to bring them the services they need especially right now that the implementation of Executive Order No. 70 is in full swing, JTFB believes that it will leave no room for communist terrorists' ill motives.

 

It can be recalled that thru EO 70 or the Whole-Of-Nation Approach, the Regional Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (RTF-ELCAC) or Task Force Katuninongan asin Kauswagan was created.

 

It unifies all government agencies to plan and implement programs and projects for the communities and resolve insurgency.

 

Members of the CTG have been instilling in the minds of the people that the lack of government services can only be resolved through revolution which in reality, only promotes violence.

 

That is why the Army in Bicol intensifies its focused military operations to stop the CTG from spreading harm, conducting extortion activities and recruiting innocent civilians to join them in their useless cause.

 

Along with it is the unending call for armed guerillas to follow the footsteps of their former comrades who already surrendered to the government and are now enjoying a more peaceful life with their families and friends.

 

Right now, with the RTF-ELCAC, more government agencies can provide assistance to rebels who decided to return to the folds of the law.

 

They can also enroll in Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) which gives educational, livelihood and housing assistance so as firearm renumeration.  

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