Region 12

7 BIFF yield to Army in North Cotabato

SURRENDER. Military and town officials of Pikit, North Cotabato presented to the media the seven BIFF members who surrendered on Thursday (March 18, 2021). Brig. Gen. Roberto Capulong (inset), commander of the 602nd Infantry Brigade, also inspected the firearms yielded by the surrendering BIFF batch. (Photos courtesy of 602Bde)

COTABATO CITY: Seven combatants of the local terrorist group Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) decided to surrender to the military in North Cotabato to live normal lives once more, officials said Thursday.

With the help of acting Mayor Muhyryn Sultan Casi of Pikit, North Cotabato the BIFF surrenderers laid down their arms and yielded on Thursday afternoon to the Army’s 602nd Infantry Brigade (602Bde) in Pikit, North Cotabato.

The BIFF batch turned in their rifles during surrender rites to Brigadier General Roberto Capulong, commander of 602Bde, and Lt. Col. Rommel Mundala, commanding officer of the 90th Infantry Battalion as witnessed by local officials.

The mayor has offered to provide initial cash assistance and livelihood packages to the former rebels so they can start a peaceful and normal life.

They surrendered three M14 rifles, one homemade KG-9 automatic pistol; one rocket-propelled grenade launcher; a 12-gauge shotgun; an M79 grenade launcher; an improvised explosive device with blasting cap; and assorted ammunition.

Capulong the surrenderers were involved in atrocities in Pikit, and against military forces in the so-called SPMS box composed of the adjoining towns of Shariff Aguak, Datu Saudi Ampatuan (Pagatin), Mamasapano, and Datu Salibo.

“They all belonged to the BIFF Kagui Karialan faction and linked to highway robberies, hold-up, liquidation operations, and extortion activities in North Cotabato and Maguindanao,” Capulong said.

In a statement, Maj. Gen. Juvymax Uy, 6th Infantry Division commander, has expressed hope other BIFF members will follow suit to also be reunited with the families. Since January this year, about 36 BIFF have surrendered to the 6ID, he said. 

(Edwin Fernandez/PNA/SRNY/RSP) 

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