Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Army, LGU conducts consultation, dialogue for peace and development in AgNor community

BUENAVISTA, Agusan del Norte - The troops of 23rd Infantry “Masigasig” Battalion, together with the local government unit (LGU) of Las Nieves and the local officials of Barangay Durian conducted a peace and consultation dialogue with the residents on November 6, 2020.

The activity aims to discuss the primary issues and concerns of the residents particularly on land, the recruitment of the Communist Terrorist Group (CTG) among the youth, the peace, and order situation, and other related matters. It was attended by the identified local supporters of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), the National Democratic Front (NDF), and its armed wing, the New People’s Army (NPA). The said supporters are known for providing food, finances, information on the whereabouts of the government forces, and other forms of support to the NPA.

During the open forum, some residents openly voiced their concerns about the security situation in their barangay. They admitted to being forced to support the NPA because of fear. The residents added that for a couple of times, they were threatened by NPA combatants and warned of repercussions once they decline to give support to the communist movement. Residents said most of those who experienced harassment and intimidation from the NPA are those residing in the remote areas of the barangay.

Las Nieves Mayor Avelina S. Rosales assured the residents of Durian of the continuing support of the LGU, the line agencies, and the Army. She also thanked the 23rd IB troopers for protecting and saving the residents of Durian from the threats of the CPP-NPA. She also assured the residents of the constant delivery of basic services and livelihood opportunities to address the different issues that are being exploited by the NPAs.

“Together, we can build a strong, peaceful, and resilient community here in Durian. Rest assured that your LGU, the Army, and the line agencies of the government will continue to deliver development interventions for the residents of Barangay Durian,” Rosales said.

Rosales also asked the residents to do their duties and responsibilities, emphasizing that defeating the insurgency is a shared task of the stakeholders and the community members. She added that residents are also bound to protect their community from the encroachment of the CPP-NPA.

“Magkahiusa kita ug magtinabangay para makab-ot nato ang kalinaw nga dugay na nato nga gipangandoy,” Rosales said.

Meanwhile, Lt. Col. Julius Cesar C. Paulo, the Acting Commanding Officer of 23IB expressed optimism that the residents of Durian will eventually defeat communism and terrorism with the support of the different stakeholders in Las Nieves and the province of Agusan del Norte. He also thanked the barangay council of Durian for their continuing support to the unified efforts to defeat the insurgency in the area.

“Together, we can dismantle the political and military organization of the CPP-NPA Terrorist Group here in the locality. Let us work together in restoring peace in your area. We must not allow any group to sow havoc in your community,” Paulo said.

He also reminded the residents to be cautious in joining progressive groups and organizations who are just pretending to provide help in the community.

“These so-called progressive groups are fronts of the CTGs and their main objective is to agitate people and promote communist vested interests. They are not sincere in helping people. Their aim is to sow anger and animosities, for you to join the CTG and fight the government,” Paulo said.

Source: Civil-Military Operations Office, 23rd Infantry Battalion, Joint Task Force Diamond, PA

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