Sixty mass base supporters of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) in two villages of Binalbagan, Negros Occidental have withdrawn their support to the rebel group.
The move was announced by the Philippine Army’s 303rd Infantry Brigade over the weekend, after they pledged loyalty to the government in an oath of allegiance ceremony held at the Barangay Bi-ao covered court on Friday.
Those who took their oath were residents of Barangays Bi-ao and Santol. They were assisted by the 62nd Infantry Battalion led by commanding officer, Lt. Col. Egbert Dacoscos.
“The community took a vow to give their loyalty to the government and abandon the wrong ideology that once deceived them. In addition, they pledged to withdraw their support to CPP-NPA,” Dacoscos said in a statement.
The oath of allegiance ceremony, which was witnessed by Mayor Emmanuel Aranda, officials of the two barangays, and representatives from other sectors, included a candle-lighting to symbolize the call for peace.
Troopers of the 62nd Battalion gave a lecture on the atrocities of the CPP-NPA during the peace advocacy symposium.
Dacoscos also called on the CPP-NPA rebels to “lay down their arms and surrender to the government” to avail of government programs and live with their families again.
On Sept. 10 and 13, a total of 113 rebel sympathizers from neighboring Himamaylan City also renounced their support to the rebel movement as well.
These include two groups — 27 from Barangay Mahalang and 86 from Barangay Buenavista.
On August 25, a total of 103 rebel sympathizers in Barangays Bagtic and Luyang in Mabinay, Negros Oriental abandoned the rebel group while on August 8, a group of 18 mass base supporters of the CPP-NPA in Barangay Carabalan, Himamaylan City also did the same.