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NPA rebels urged to yield peacefully

POLICE Regional Office 1 (PRO1) director, Brigadier General Rodolfo S. Azurin Jr. yesterday renewed his call on all members and supporters of the New People’s Army in Ilocos-Pangasinan region to yield to the government and live a peaceful life with their families.

“I’m encouraging members and supporters of the NPA in Region 1 to lay down their arms and avail of the comprehensive government package to allow them to earn a living and return to the mainstream of the society,” the PRO1 director said.

He said that the latest to surrender to the PNP after being disappointed with the communist movement and their ‘false and empty promises’ is Allan Rey Agbayani Balanay alias ‘Ka Miguel/Ka Magong,’ a 48-year old native of Palias, Vintar, Ilocos Norte residing in Kalayaan Street in Quezon City.

In a report to Philippine National Police chief, General Debold M. Sinas, the PRO1 director said that Balanay yielded following negotiations with officials of the PRO1 and the Army’s 7th Infantry Division.

“The surrender of Balanay was attributed to the massive information campaign and tactical operations conducted by different law enforcement agencies with the active support of the community and the local government agencies under the Whole-of-Nation Approach to End Local Communist Armed Conflict in the country,’’ Azurin said.

He also thanked San Fabian Mayor Constante Agbayani for being an instrument in the surrender of Balanay last Tuesday.

PRO1 records showed that Balanay belong to the NPA Danilo Ben Command operating in Cagayan where he was designated as an education committee member from 2004 to 2006 before becoming a rebel medical officer from 2006 to 2010.

The wanted rebel also became a member of the NPA’s Hilagang Silangan Larangang Guerrilla based in Cagayan West from 2004 to 2005 and later joined the NPA’s Cagayan East unit from 2010 to 2010.

Azurin said that Balanay and his family appeared before Mayor Agbayani and aired his wish to return to the folds of the law. In turn, the mayor contacted officials of the San Fabian Municipal Police Station, the Pangasinan Provincial Police Office, the PRO1 Regional Intelligence Division and the Army’s 702nd Infantry Brigade to facilitate the safe surrender of the latter.

Balanay has been subjected to a debriefing after his surrender and has been placed under tight security to prevent NPA reprisals.

Azurin said that Balanay is the subject of warrants of arrest for kidnapping, attempted murder, robbery-in-band and grave coercion issued by different Cagayan courts since January 2017.