By Mike U. Crismundo

BUTUAN CITY – In an objective to make them productive in their new way of life, the government donated chicks to the former New People’s Army (NPA) rebels at the headquarters of the Army’s 29th Infantry (Matatag) Battalion (29th IB) in Barangay Del Pilar, Cabadbaran City, Agusan del Norte province.

Initially, the former NPAs received 100 chicks from the Provincial Agriculturist Office through the Animal Chicken Dispersal Project of the ‘Agusan Up’ of the provincial government of Agusan del Norte headed by Gov. Dale B. Corvera.

The donated chicks on Wednesday (July 29) will be distributed to the former rebels (FRs) as soon as these are full-grown, 29th IB Civil Military Operations (CMO) officer 1st Lt. Miguel O. Borromeo told The Manila Bulletin on Monday.

He said these can provide the FRs with an additional source of income or food for their everyday needs.

“This is really a big help for them in their new way of life,” said the 29th IB CMO officer.

“My joy is full because of the overwhelming assistance provided by the government. It’s hard to imagine how our life would be without such help. I hope in time we could also pay back all the goodness which the government has shown us,” 1st Lt. Borromeo added, quoting the statement in vernacular of the former NPA “Ka Annie”

On the other hand, 29th IB commander Lt. Col. Isagani O. Criste said the government is trying its effort to assist the former NPAs,

”The government has been exerting a lot of efforts and exhausting all means to keep its promise of help to its people particularly the FRs,” he said.

“I just hope we appreciate such efforts, by doing our part to take care of what they have provided us. May we use it to help ourselves because not all the time can the government provide for us. We need to stand up and work hard,” the 29th IB commander said.

“And to all other rebels who are still doubting if the government’s promises is sincere, just come down and see for yourself how wonderful are its programs and projects for you. Surrender now, and start to live a better life,” Lt. Col. Criste encouraged.