Saturday, January 28, 2023

Army Reservist from Bukidnon wins Miss Star Continental International 2023 in Vietnam

Ms. Meriam Campong, an Army Reservist from the small town of Kibawe in Bukidnon, Philippines, was crowned Miss Star Continental International 2023 on January 7th, 2023.

The pageant, held in Vietnam, saw 35 contestants from 20 countries vying for the crown.

Contestants competed in a series of challenges; including talent and formal wear competitions, as well as interviews with the judges.

Ms. Campong, who has been a reservist of the 1003rd Community Defense Center, 10th Regional Community Defense Group, Reserve Command, Philippine Army, was elated to be crowned, saying, “This experience has been a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I was surrounded by amazing contestants from all over the world, and to be chosen as the winner is truly an honor.”

Ms. Campong’s victory was especially meaningful as it marks the first time that a Philippine Army Reservist has ever won the title. Her win is being celebrated across the Philippines and beyond, as it is a testament to the strength and determination of those serving in the military.

Ms. Campong’s win is also a sign of hope for the future of the pageant world, as she hopes to use her newfound platform to inspire other young women to pursue their dreams, no matter their background or circumstance. (10th RCDG)

2 rebels die, 2 captured in Bukidnon clash

Two alleged New People’s Army (NPA) rebels died while two others were captured by the Philippine Army (PA) in a recent clash in Malaybalay City, Bukidnon, the military announced Monday, Jan. 31.

According to a military report reaching Camp Aguinaldo, the clash occurred when personnel from the 2nd Scout Ranger Battalion (2ndSRB) and 8th Infantry Battalion (8IB) responded to a tip from a resident about the presence of five alleged members of the NPA’s Headquarters Force Neo, North Central Mindanao Regional Committee (HQF Neo, NCMRC) in the hinterlands of Sitio Lamana, Barangay Kibalabag, Malaybalay City last Saturday.

Lt. Col. Anthony Bacus, commander of the 8th Infantry Battalion (8IB), alleged that the rebels were extorting money and food supplies from vegetable farmers in the village.

A brief gun battle occurred when the responding troops chanced upon the armed men who fired the first shot.

After the firefight, the troops recovered the bodies of alias “Draw,” an alleged member of the dismantled Squad 1, Platoon Dario, Sub-Regional Committee 2 of the NCRMC; and alias “Paet,” an alleged Communication Staff/Special Operations Group/Intel of Regional Operations Command, NCMRC.

Meanwhile, captured were Nisy Sante alias “Arnold,” 72, said to be a supply officer of Squad 1, Regional Sentro De Gravedad (RSDG) Compaq, NCMRC; and Gelloye Lipanya Sagula alias “Janjan,” 20, an alleged member of Squad 2, Team Abe of the same unit.

Pursuit operations were ongoing to arrest the fifth rebel who managed to escape from the troops.

The troops also rescued seven civilians, four of them minors, who were “threatened and extorted” by the suspects.

Bacus identified them as “Jecko,” 30, and his son “Gerald,” 11; “Raffy,” 28, his wife “Jennifer,” 24, and their children “Jepoy,” 5, “Junray,” 3, and Shantal 1.

“We rescued the civilians who were threatened and extorted by the NPA terrorists. They were approached at their farm and the CNTs [communist-terrorist group] extorted vegetables from them and when they saw the soldiers approaching, they immediately fired,” Bavus said in a local dialect.

“We are waiting for the family members of the dead CNTs in order for them to finally rest in peace. We are saddened by their demise, and it is because of the deception of the NPA terrorists,” he added.

Seized from the suspects were three caliber 45 pistols, one 9mm pistol, five magazines, one cellphone, and assorted medical supplies.

Bacus appealed to the remaining communist rebels in the area to surrender to the government and avail of social development benefits under the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP) of the government.

NorMin police, Army ready forces vs. poll-related violence

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (05 Oct. 2021) – Both the Police Regional Office (PRO) 10 (Northern Mindanao) and the Army’s 4th Infantry Division (4ID) have started readying their forces to monitor areas in the region that are prone to election-related violence.

Lt. Col. Fermin Armandarez III, chief of the PRO-10’s Operations Division, said via Zoom conference on Tuesday since the third quarter of 2021, regional officials have been in talks with provincial police directors and city police directors here and in Iligan City about the matter.

“As of now, we are gathering intelligence information as to the (possible) hotspots (in the region), to preempt election-related incidence,” he said.

Col. Michel Anayron, 4ID assistant commander, said when election season draws near, normally a strategic conference between the Army and police takes place to identify areas that need security support.

“We usually divide areas where the PNP (Philippine National Police) and AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) establish their presence. There will be areas led by the police, which will be supported by the Army (vice versa),” he said.

Anayron said Maj. Gen. Romeo S. Brawner Jr., 4ID commander, has instructed Army field units in its area of responsibility to organize task forces to address the security concerns of the upcoming polls.

Meanwhile, Manuel Orduña, director of the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency -10, said President Rodrigo Duterte has issued a stern warning against political warlords, including the communist New People’s Army (NPA) with regards to election-related violence.

“The President wants a fair and honest election; groups like NPA who tend to meddle during elections (in the hinterland communities) are included, and should they continue (to cause disorder), they are warned to face the full force of the law,” he said.

NPA IP family of 3 surrender to Army in Bukidnon

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (06 Oct. 2021) – A family of three belonging to an indigenous peoples (IP) group who joined the New People’s Army (NPA) surrendered to the Army’s 88th Infantry Battalion (88IB) in Bukidnon on Oct. 4.

The report was released by the Army on Tuesday afternoon (October 5) identified the surrenderers as Man Oloron, 56, an NPA “political guide,” and his wife Nili Salobo, 55, together with their 11-year-old son.

The 88IB’s Alfa Company confiscated from them one carbine rifle, with one magazine, and nine live ammunition in Sitio Malantao, Barangay Halapitan, San Fernando, Bukidnon, during their surrender.

Their surrender was the result of the unit’s continued campaign against communist armed groups in the mountainous areas of Pantaron Mountain Ranges, covering Malaybalay City, San Fernando, and Cabanglasan towns in Bukidnon.

Oloron said they joined the NPA after the communist group promised them a better life.
The couple’s son was turned over to the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office of San Fernando, Bukidnon to undergo an interview and stress debriefing.

Lt. Col. Christian James P. Vingno, 88IB’s commander, said the continuous recruitment of children-soldiers and exploitation of IP communities is a clear violation of International Humanitarian Law (IHL).

“The comprehensive conduct of Community Support Program (CSP) and the focused military operation of government troops have been instrumental in the rapid disintegration of the NPA formation. This is a clear indicator that we are near to ending this 52-year of local communist armed conflict,” he said.

The 88IB has already coordinated with the police as it plans to file an IHL violation case against the NPA for recruiting minors.

“I am also calling the attention of all the parents, let us monitor our children from being recruited by the NPAs,” Vingno said.

The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

Tunghaan sa IPs, FMR gimugna sa Army, LGU Quezon

MARAMAG, Bukidnon – Ang 88th Infantry “Maringal” Battalion, Philippine Army kauban ang Local Government Unit sa Quezon ug 524 Engineering Construction Battalion ang mi-facilitate sa construction sa Indigenous School ug sa improvement sa Farm to Market Road (FMR) sa Purok 8, Brgy. Magsaysay, Quezon, Bukidnon.

Sa report sa 402nd Media Partners viber group, ang upat ka kilometro nga road rehabilitation ug construction sa isa ka unit sa duha ka classrooms alang sa IP school nga gihimo sa Engineering Battalion, ang nagsugod kaniadto pang Abril 6, 2020. Kahinumdoman nga kini nga IP community hugtanong nisalikway na sa suporta sa NPA.

Ang nasangpit nga proyekto, resukta sa government interventions human sa Community Support Team sa 88th Infantry “Maringal” Battalion nga nag-immersion sa komunidad.

Nadiskobrehan nila nga ang kulang sa komunidad mao ang FMR ug eskwelahan diin maoy gigamit sa mga NPA sa pag-radicalized sa komunidad ug pag-recruit sa mga Indigenous People (IP) nga moanib sa NPA.

Ang proyekto gipundohan sa LGU Quezon sa pagpanguna ni Mayor Pablo Lorenzo II ug sa Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS) nga gi-implementar sa Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

Ang eskwelahan giturn-over na ngadto sa Department of Education (DepEd).

Si Lt. Col. Franklin Fabic, 88IB Battalion Commander sa isa ka pahayag, niingon nga “kini unta ang sinugdnanan sa bag-ong dalan sa kinabuhi sa barangay. Kini nga proyekto ug programa nagpamatuod sa commitment sa gobyerno sa pagkab-ot sa kalinaw ug kalamboan.” (Sean G. Sulugan)