Sen. Bong Go sees PBBM’s amnesty grant to rebels as a path to peace; calls for sincerity among parties

Sen. Bong Go sees PBBM’s amnesty grant to rebels as a path to peace; calls for sincerity among parties

SENATOR Christopher “Bong” Go, on Friday, November 24, expressed his support for President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr.‘s decision to grant amnesty to former rebels and insurgents.

Go took note of the President’s action and reflected on the tragedies of internal conflict.

“I laud President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr., for granting amnesty to former rebels, including those presently charged or detained communist insurgents and secessionists,” he said.

He highlighted the sorrow of witnessing Filipinos in conflict over differing beliefs, stressing the impact on the families of the deceased.

“Katulad ng sinasabi ko pa noon, masakit makita na ang mga Pilipino ay nakikipagpatayan sa kapwa Pilipino dahil lang sa pagkakaiba ng paniniwala sa buhay. Kung merong namamatay man na sundalo at rebelde, pinakakawawa dito ang mga naulilang pamilya nila,” Go remarked.

The amnesty, under Proclamations 403 to 406, covers former members of groups such as the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF), Revolutionary Proletarian Army-Alex Boncayao Brigade (RPMP-RPA-ABB), Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), and Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF).

Crimes included in the amnesty are rebellion, insurrection, and other offenses committed in pursuit of political beliefs.

Executive Order No. (EO) 47, which amended EO No. 125, updated the National Amnesty Commission’s (NAC’s) role in processing amnesty applications.

Go emphasized the root causes of rebellion, citing poverty and lack of government services as key factors.

He continues to push for improved housing, education, health, agriculture, and livelihood programs to encourage rebels to reintegrate and live peacefully.

“Alam naman natin na kahirapan at kawalan ng serbisyo mula sa gobyerno ang madalas na dahilan kung bakit meron tayong mga kababayang nagrerebelde,” he stated.

Highlighting the continuity of this peace initiative from former president Rodrigo Duterte’s administration, Go welcomed the ongoing efforts under President Marcos and called for sincerity among parties to realize the goal of long-term peace.

“Kaya’t itinaguyod ni dating Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte ang whole-of-nation approach para masolusyonan ang ilang dekadang paghahanap sa pangmatagalang kapayapaan sa bansa. Nagpapasalamat tayo na patuloy itong ipinapatupad ng administrasyon ni Pangulong Bongbong Marcos Jr.,” he noted.

“Kung kaya dapat mas pagbutihin pa natin ang ating mga programa sa pabahay, edukasyon, kalusugan, pagsasaka at kabuhayan upang mas lalong makaengganyo tayo sa mga kapatid nating Pilipinong nagrerebelde na bumalik-loob na sa gobyerno at mamuhay ng mapayapa kasama ang kanilang pamilya,” Go added.

Ilapit pa natin lalo ang gobyerno sa kanila, ang mga serbisyo ng pamahalaan kahit sa pinakaliblib na mga komunidad,” he urged.

His closing remark, “Ika nga, let us give peace a chance,” encapsulates the hope for a peaceful future.

To bring government services closer to the people, Go, who serves as Chair of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography, reiterated his commitment to support the establishment of more Super Health Centers across the country.

Go also principally sponsored and is one of the authors of the Republic Act No. 11959, also known as the Regional Specialty Centers Act, which was signed into law by Marcos on August 24.

The law mandates the establishment of regional specialty centers within existing Department of Health (DOH) regional hospitals.

It stands as a testament to the commitment of the government to uplift the nation’s health infrastructure.

Previously, Go elaborated on the significance of the Balik-Loob Program, overseen by the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC), which aims to reintegrate former rebels into mainstream society by offering various forms of assistance and legal protections.

Go particularly highlighted the Balik-Loob Program, which is designed to encourage individuals to return to the government fold by offering various forms of support.

The Balik-Loob Program, officially known as the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP), is a key initiative of the Philippine government. Managed by Task Force Balik-Loob (TFBL), the program commends the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) for their role in positively transforming the lives of former rebels.

Created by virtue of Administrative Order No. 10 in 2018 during the time of Duterte, the TFBL serves as the central coordinating body for the government’s reintegration efforts for members of the CPP-NPA-NDF, including their immediate families.

A standout feature of the Balik-Loob Program is the Balik-Loob Lending Program, a loan facility provided by Landbank.

This lending program is one of the benefits of E-CLIP, aimed at helping former rebels establish or expand businesses, thereby facilitating their successful reintegration into civilian life.


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