TABUK CITY, Kalinga – Stalwarts of the unified Cordillera Liberations Army (CPLA) underscored the legitimacy and validity of the reunification process undergone by the previously fragmented organization, belying the unfair, biased and unfounded statements of their former colleague that the process was allegedly fake.
Abra Vice governor and newly-installed CPLA Chairman Ronald Balao-as expressed disappointment that there are still embattled leaders of the organization who seem not to adhere to the reunification process because of personal ad political interests which were their alleged guiding principles in the past that resulted to the tainting of the group’s image.
“We adhere to the clamor of original members of the CPLA for us to unite and we also heed to the present administration’s call for peace and unification. We pursued the unification process because we found light at the end of the tunnel with the support of the Duterte administration to the region’s renewed quest for autonomy,” Balao-as stressed.
Juanita Chulsi, newly-installed CPLA vice chairman, said the ones that attended the unification process were original members of the CPLA who want the institution of reforms in the group so that it will become an active partner of government in the peace and unification in the countryside and for no other purpose because they want to erase the bad image of the CPLA that was depicted in the minds of the Cordillerans due to the involvement of their previous leaders to various illegal activities around the region.
Chulsi urged disgranted CPLA leaders to respect the decision of the majority of the leaders and the elders of the group because they want to work for peace and development not only for the present generation of Cordillerans but also for the future generations who deserve to reap the fruits of the region’s existing struggle for autonomy.
For his part, Pablo Weygan, regional commander of the Camp Conrado Balweg in Kalinga, asserted much have been said on the negative perception of the Cordillerans on the CPLA because of the involvement of their previous leaders to questionable and doubtful activities that is why they supported the unification process to be able to gain back the good image of the organization and restore the trust and confidence of the people to the present leaders.
He claimed the original leaders are aware of the questionable transactions and practices of their previous leaders and they do not want such bad image to be connected with the organization, thus, the unification process was timely and the new leaders were reminded of their obligation to uphold the greater interest of the Cordillerans and for them to work for the realization of the renewed quest for autonomy.
Bagumbayan Punong Barangay Andres Cos-agon said the unified CPLA leaders and elders saw the sincerity of the Duterte administration in pushing for peace and unification that is why they decided to unify the factions to gain the trust of the national leaders for them to be part of the vehicle in realizing change in the countryside through the achievement of the elusive autonomy for the region.
He said they also want to remove the bad image that was tainted to the organization by the illegal activities of its previous leaders.