The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office I awarded a total of Php454,775.00 worth of financial assistance and hygiene kits to 92 former members and supporters of Militia ng Bayan.
DSWD Field Office 1 Information Officer Darwin Chan said each beneficiary received Php3,000.00 immediate assistance and Php1,787.75 worth of hygiene kits on March 5 at the gymnasium in barangay Tablac, Candon City, Ilocos Sur.
“This activity is part of the agency’s commitment to President Rodrigo Duterte’s Executive Order (EO) No. 70, which aims to end the local communist armed conflict in the country,” he said.
Chan also said the DSWD is in close coordination with the Philippine Army and the local government to know more of the needs that the agency can provide to the beneficiaries.
“Kanina, profiling lang muna ang ginawa natin then babalik tayo to assess yung mga pangangailangan nila kasi we also provide livelihood assistance sa former supporters/rebels at kung pasado sila sa eligibility requirements na kailangan ng programa ng DSWD, mabibigyan sila ng kaagarang tulong,” Chan added.
Meanwhile, DSWD Field Office 1 Regional Director Marcelo Nicomedes J. Castillo said the main objective of the activity is to promote unity and peace among everyone and he is hopeful that the beneficiaries will continue to be partners of the government in denouncing any local conflict and communist ideology, and condemning insurgency in the region.
“Ang pagbabago ay makakamit natin kung tayo ay sama-samang mag-uusap ng maayos para sa tunay na kapayapaan at kalayaan. Iisa lang ang ating hangarin: ang mapaganda ang ating bayan, at maging maayos ang ating buhay at kapakanan ng mga bata at kabataan,” RD Castillo said during the activity.
Meanwhile, Lieutenant Colonel Rodrigo A. Marinas Jr. of the 81st Infantry Battalion, 7th Infantry Division, Philippine Army (PA) said the PA is coordinating with the different national agencies such as Technical Education and Skills Development Authority and Department of Labor and Employment to give more opportunities to the former rebels to achieve a better living. (PIA Ilocos Sur)