Sen. Go witnessed the turnover of assistance
BORONGAN CITY– About 328 former rebels and sympathizers of the communist group from various parts of Eastern Samar availed of a one-time cash assistance from the government on Thursday (Nov. 17).
Among them was a 76-year old man from Barangay Benowangan of this city who was an armed member of the communist group for 15 years.
“I get tired of fighting with our very own government. I realized it’s not worth my life and my family. Our government is willing to help us former rebels to start a new life,” he said.
The former rebel surrendered to the authorities sometime last year together with his 68-year old wife. He claimed that none of their eight children became members of the New People’s Army (NPA) nor been indoctrinated about the communist movement.
The septuagenarian received P15,000 cash from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) under its sustainable livelihood assistance program.
He said that he will use the cash assistance to start a small piggery business.
The DSWD released P4.9 billion for the cash assistance to the beneficiaries. It was not, however, indicated as to how many of them were former rebels and sympathizers who each received P15,000.
Senator Christopher ‘Bong’ Go, witnessed the turnover of the financial assistance to the former rebels and sympathizers, said that he hope that they will put into good use the money they received from the government.
“(And) to those who are still in the mountains, I appeal to you to have faith in our government which is ready to help you,” he said during a brief interview.
He also noted that the government appears to be winning the insurgency problem saying that it is now weakening.
“The insurgency problem is now weakening like in Mindanao and here in Eastern Samar. As a senator, I don’t like to see Filipinos killing each other that is why, I appeal to you to surrender to the government which is sincere in helping you,” Go said.
The senator was welcomed by Governor Ben Evardone who also vowed to eradicate the insurgency problem in his province with the help of soldiers and other government agencies.
(JOEY A. GABIETA)