By Alexander Lopez

(Image courtesy of PRO-13 Information Office)

BUTUAN CITY – Nine members of the communist New People’s Army (NPA) simultaneously surrendered in the provinces of Agusan del Norte and Surigao del Sur over the weekend, the Police Regional Office in the Caraga Region (PRO-13) reported Monday.

In an interview, PRO-13 information office chief Maj. Jennifer Omiter said the surrenderers who yielded Saturday are members of the Sandatahang Yunit Pampropaganda, Militia ng Bayan, and platoon members of rebel fronts.

She said the surrender was a result of the continuing negotiations of different PRO-13 field units with the support of local community leaders.

“Our units and stations are also intensifying their information drives in remote barangays on the government’s programs and services to the rebels who would wish to surrender and return to their families,” Omiter said.

Five of the nine surrenderers are from the NPA Guerilla Fronts 21 and 16 and operated in the hinterlands of Agusan del Norte.

They also turned over high-powered firearms and ammunition.

PRO-13 director Brig. Gen. Kirby John Kraft said the surrenderers will receive livelihood and other aid under the government’s Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program. (PNA)