Monday, August 28, 2023

EastMinCom Underscores Sustainment of Peace through Unity in 17th Anniversary Commemoration

NSFA, Pacanan, Davao City - Eastern Mindanao Command (EastMinCom), led by LtGen. Greg T. Almerol, highlighted the continuity of hard-earned peace and development in Eastern Mindanao through the unity of various stakeholders as the Command celebrated its 17th Founding Anniversary on August 25 here.

With the theme "EMC@17: Padayon sa Panaghiusa sa Pagkab-ot sa Kalinaw ug Kalambuan sa Sidlakang Mindanao," EastMinCom commemorated the event by presenting its accomplishments and recognizing the civilian stakeholders, military personnel, and Civilian Human Resources who demonstrated unwavering support in its previous and latest campaigns.

Undersecretary Angelito M. De Leon of the Office for Capability Assessment and Development of the Department of National Defense (DND) graced the ceremony as the Guest of Honor and Speaker on behalf of DND Secretary Gilberto C. Teodoro Jr.

During the program, LtGen. Almerol presented the Command's successes under his leadership, putting emphasis on the dismantling of 15 New People's Army (NPA) Guerrilla Fronts (GF) and six Vertical Units (VU) across its Joint Operational Area (JOA).

Similarly, a Static Display was installed in the venue, showcasing the Command's accomplishments across the 12 clusters of the National Task Force to End the Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC), together with the firearms captured, confiscated, seized, and recovered (CCSR) from the CTG.

Zooming in on EastMinCom's accomplishments from 2nd Semester of 2022 to 1st Semester of 2023, it has dismantled five Sub-Regional Committees (SRC), two GFs, three VUs, and one Independent Platoon during the end of Campaign Plan "Kalinaw Sidlakang Mindanao" (2017-2022) and the start of Campaign Plan "Padayon sa Panaghiusa Mindanao" (2023-2028).

As a result of its focused military operations, the Command also neutralized 426 Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP)-NPA Terrorists (CNT), comprising 351 surrenders, 21 captures, and 54 deaths; captured 468 firearms, with 382 high-powered and 86 low-powered; recovered 65 anti-personnel mines; and discovered 63 enemy hideouts during the same period.

Moreover, among the 426 neutralized Communist Terrorist Group (CTG) personalities, 20 were High-Value Individuals, with two from the Komisyon Mindanao (KOMMID), eight from the Regional level, six from the Sub-regional level, and four from the Guerrilla Front level.

Significantly, on September 19, 2022, Davao Oriental was declared insurgency-free, following the footsteps of other Davao Provinces and a Highly-Urbanized City. This eventually led to the declaration of the entire Davao Region as free from communist insurgency on October 12, which was affirmed by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. in a ceremonial declaration on October 27.

Not stopping there, LtGen. Almerol also showcased their significant headway in diminishing the influence of insurgency parameters across parts of Region 10 and Region 12, as well as the entire Caraga Region during a similar period.

In his message, the EastMinCom Commander acknowledged the collaborative efforts of the military units through their rigorous operations and the stakeholders who contributed to Executive Order 70, or the “Whole-of-Nation Approach,” which paved the way for the Command to achieve a "Strategic Victory" against the CTG, a feat once thought to be impossible.

"As we stand on the abyss of our Command's anniversary, it is clear that our actions have yielded results far beyond our aspirations. We are humbled and proud to show how Eastern Mindanao has emerged as a beacon of progress, soaring above other regions in the nation," LtGen. Almerol said.

"Lahat ng ito, dahil sa kahusayan at dedikasyon ng ating mga commanders at tropa sa frontlines, lalung-lalo na ang di matatawarang suporta at pagtitiwala ng taong bayan (All these, are because of the excellence and dedication of our commanders and troops on the frontlines, especially the invaluable support and trust of the people)," the EastMinCom Commander added.

Meanwhile, Usec. De Leon lauded the excellence, resilience, and remarkable accomplishments of Team EastMinCom that contributed to the pursuit of peace and development, resulting in stories of positive change, a restored atmosphere of peace and security, and renewed opportunities for the people in Eastern Mindanao.

"Through your collective efforts to support the National Task Force to End the Local Communist Armed Conflict or NTF-ELCAC, countless lives have been transformed, and communities have found new avenues to thrive in an environment free from fear and violence. May every member of the Eastern Mindanao Command continue to pursue higher standards of professionalism to provide even better services to our stakeholders in Eastern Mindanao," he stated.

In a recorded video message, Sec. Teodoro also commended the Command for its ceaseless efforts in maintaining peace and order in its JOA, expressing hope for the replication of its achievements across the nation.

"We commend you for your unceasing efforts in ensuring the peace and order of your AOR (area of responsibility). We hope that your accomplishments can be replicated throughout the land, of which all of us collectively pledged to work hand-in-hand in achieving," the DND Secretary said.

"On behalf of the Department of National Defense and the people of the Philippines, we commend you and we greet you a happy (and) blessed 17th anniversary, and we promise our fullest support, collectively, in order for each and every one of us to achieve greater heights in all our tasks," he added.

Apart from the awardees, other guests present during the event were the Joint Task Force, Brigade, and Post-Unit Commanders under EastMinCom, Police counterparts, heads and representatives of Local Government Units and Agencies, media, and other key civilian partners.

Before the formal celebration, EastMinCom also organized a series of pre-anniversary events, including the Summer Sports League, Fun Run with Reservists and ROTC Cadets, Proficiency Shoot, and Health Fair. The festivities concluded with a Fellowship Night to acknowledge the dedication of the Command's personnel in fulfilling its mission, followed by a Thanksgiving Mass.#


You may read the accomplishments and other features of Team EastMinCom in its 2023 Anniversary Edition of Kagitingan Journal, available online at

Source: Public Information Office, Eastern Mindanao Command, AFP

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