Ex-rebels rebuild lives in Negros with poultry farming

ASSISTANCE FOR LIVELIHOODS. Former rebels of the New People’s Army from the town of Don Salvador Benedicto in the Negros Occidental show the free-range chicks they received from the Provincial Veterinary Office at the headquarters of the 79th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army in Barangay Bato, Sagay City, August 11, 2021. They are required to obtain more benefits under the Enhanced Global Local Integration Program. (Photo courtesy of PVO-NegOcc)

THE CITY OF BACOLOD – Some 25 former rebels of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) of Don Salvador Benedicto, Negros Occidental recently received 250 heads of free-range chicks as a livelihood aid from the Provincial Veterinary Office ( PVO).

Project revenue on August 11 was facilitated by the 79th Infantry Battalion (IB) of the Philippine Army during a consultative dialogue at its headquarters in Barangay Bato, in the city of Sagay.

Lieutenant Dansan Camua, the 79IB’s civil-military operations officer, told the Philippine news agency on Monday that the ex-rebels were part of the surrenders in northern Negros.

“They are now dealing with the requirements for receiving the benefits of E-CLIP (Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program),” he said.

In a statement, the provincial veterinarian, Dr Renante Decena, said the PVO was a partner with the Philippine military and other government agencies in providing livelihood assistance to former rebels.

“These are appropriate business ventures right now. The scattered animals come from high quality stocks and appear to be boosting outdoor backyard production in the province, ”he added.

Decena said the stocks provided to former rebels are high quality and affordable protein, especially for aspiring small farmers who cannot afford to buy commercial feed.

Free-range chicken requires low-cost production inputs in terms of housing and feed, the PVO chief said.

E-CLIP brings the former rebels back into the community to be with their families and to start over.

Benefits include reintegration assistance; remuneration for firearms, explosives and ammunition; immediate assistance of PHP 15,000; livelihood assistance worth up to PHP 50,000; subsistence material and tools or employment assistance; access to government services; medical and legal assistance; lodging; modified conditional money transfer; loan and market access; alternative learning system; psychosocial help; tuition and allowance; and conditional transitional grant.

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

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