President Rodrigo R. Duterte, assisted by Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Assistant Secretary for Specialized Programs, Rhea Peñaflor (left) hands over the government’s assistance to a member of KAPATIRAN to help her start a new life with her family.  (Photo courtesy of Mr. LEO SOLINAP, Freelance Photographer)

JAMINDAN, Capiz (19 Sept) – President Rodrigo R. Duterte led the ceremonial release of the government’s socio-economic assistance packages amounting to P16.5 million to 727 members of the Kapatiran Para sa Progresong Panlipunan, Inc. (KAPATIRAN).

KAPATIRAN was established in 2013 as the Rebolusyonaryong Partido ng Manggagawa-Pilipinas/Revolutionary Proletarian Army/Alex Boncayao Brigade/Tabara-Paduano Group (RPM-P/RPA/ABB/TPG), a break-away group of the Communist Party of the Philippines–New People’s Army (CPP-NPA).  The group signed a peace agreement with the government nearly two decades ago.

It is currently headed by Veronica Tabara and being represented by Representative Stephen Paduano of Abang Lingkod Partylist in the House of Representatives.

President Duterte encouraged the returnees to take advantage of this opportunity to start anew and lead a productive life with their families and loved ones. 

The release of socio-economic assistance packages was part of the activity for the decommissioning of forces and arms of the RPM-P/RPA/ABB/TPG held at Camp Macario Peralta.

The provision of financial assistance is one of the components of the Socio-Economic Reintegration Program of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) designed for KAPATIRAN members.

Its implementation is the Department’s social welfare commitment to the Clarificatory Implementing Document (CID) agreement between the government and KAPATIRAN.

Of the 727 profiled KAPATIRAN members, 644 received the social protection package amounting to P25,000 each. 

DSWD also provided P5,000 each to 99 other individuals who are currently undergoing training on camp defense, disaster response, nationalism and rescue operations, through the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS).

DSWD Assistant Secretary for Specialized Programs Rhea Peñaflor assisted President Duterte while Regional Director Ma. Evelyn Macapobre served as KAPATIRAN over-all in-charge in the profiling and eventual release of financial assistance to members of  KAPATIRAN. 

President Duterte also urged all stakeholders to continue working together to ensure that the fruits of years of negotiations will result in the attainment of lasting peace in the whole country. -30-