Benguet PPOC opposes CPLA in the province

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, June 8 (PIA) — The Benguet Provincial Peace and Order Council wants alleged members of the Cordillera Peoples Liberation Army-Cordillera Bodong Administration (CPLA-CBD) to stop the recruitment and other activities in theprovince.

During its regular meeting last week, the PPOC unanimously approved a resolution opposing the recruitment in the province by a group claiming to be the CPLA-CBA members and officials.

This was made following the subsequent reports of barangay officials and other community leaders that an alleged group claiming to be members of the CPLA and CBA have been engaging and recruiting in their communities to become members and eventually be integrated in the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

Governor Crescensio Pacalso said there are even reports that aside from recruiting, other alleged members of the CPLA-CBA are using the campaign on federalism as part of the engagement to advance their own personal interest.

The PPOC is calling for vigilance among the people of Benguet not to be persuaded and be recruited by the deceitful individuals and groups .They are also called on to report such activities being conducted in their localities to the PPOC or to the law enforcement agencies.

The governor said that the same resolution was also passed earlier this year by the Kalinga PPOC led by Gov. Jocel Baac after it was reported to the PPOC that there were individuals and groups claiming to be CPLA officers and members who had been allegedly illegally recruiting residents in the different barangays of the province to join their organization in exchange for a certain amount of money from their recruits with purported promises that enticed some individuals to join.

The group has allegedly been going to the different municipalities of Kalinga convincing people to join their force, promising that they will be enlisted in the Army or become members of a regional security force once the Cordillera becomes a federal state.

In March this year, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza has refuted claims of recruitment to the AFP by alleged individual and groups or factions of the CPLA. He also

denied having authorized any individual or group in the Cordillera region to conduct recruitment activities and promising to their recruits financial assistance, employment and integration with law enforcement agencies as well as being part of a regional security force.

The Benguet PPOC is keen on inviting OPAPP representatives in their next meetings to discuss the issues of the CPLA-CBA in the province.

By Redjie Melvic Cawis

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