BACOLOD CITY – A young Negrense woman, who became a Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) rebel when she was only 18, has turned herself in to the Philippine Army in southern Negros.
The surrender of Jenny Montaño de la Cruz, of Sitio Maatop, Barangay Sangke in Hinoba-an, Negros Occidental, was confirmed by the 15th Infantry Battalion (IB) on Thursday.
Now 22, de la Cruz, who was also known as “Kim”, “Sweet”, “Ken” and “Kian”, yielded to the government forces with a caliber .357 revolver and six live ammunition, some six months after three of her former comrades, the ones who recruited her, surrendered also to the 15IB based in Cauayan town.
Col. Leonardo Peña, commander of the 302nd Infantry Brigade, which supervises the 15IB, commended the troops for assisting de la Cruz in her surrender and for their commitment in deradicalizing the NPA-influenced far-flung communities in Negros.
“The voluntary surrender of alias “Kim” is a tangible result of the Community Support Program’s efforts that recently cleared the affected barangay in Hinoba-an,” he said.
According to the 15IB, de la Cruz, who joined the communist-terrorist group in 2016, was a former leader of Squad 2, Sentro de Grabidad of CPP-NPA’s South West Front.
The group operates in the areas of Hinoba-an, part of towns of Ilog and Candoni in Negros Occidental as well as Basay town and part of Bayawan City in Negros Oriental.
Lt. Col. Erwin Cariño, commanding officer of 15IB, lauded the commitment and willingness of de la Cruz to surrender.
“We will continue to support and assist rebels who want to surrender and return to the fold of the law. We will give them a chance to start a new l life through the government’s integration program,” he added. (PNA)