BACOLOD CITY, Philippines – The military recently claimed that some concerned citizens in Negros Island are offering P100,000 in reward money for anyone that could provide information that would lead to the arrest of rebels and terrorists.
Major General Jon Aying, commander of the Third Infantry Division of the Philippine Army based in Jamindan, Capiz, said on Wednesday, August 16, the informant would get the money if the military becomes successful in neutralizing these lawless elements.
He was referring to members of the New People’s Army (NPA), who have strongholds in the Negros provinces; Mindanao-based extremists and terrorists, some of whom had managed to sneak into Bohol months ago; private armed groups; and other groups that owned high-powered firearms.
He said informants could get P100,000 for each suspect they are able to point the authorities to.
Aying did not disclose the identity of the citizens offering reward money, but said they are only concerned with the safety of Negros Island.
Currently, there are about 200 rebel forces in Negros Island.
Aying, however, stressed that all information will be validated. “We have to be very sure that those subjected to the information are all members of the NPA,” he said, adding that they should be bona fide “hardened” rebel forces.
“Rebels who are with the NPA for just one year can’t be considered as member yet. They’re like part-time,” Aying said.
He reiterated the call of the government to the rebel forces to join the mainstream society.
He said the government will provide resettlement sites and livelihood programs, and will also allow them to keep their firearms.
“I have a strong trust that the government is capable in doing social, economic, and constitutional reforms,” he added. – Rappler.com