By FRANCIS T. WAKEFIELD
GENERAL SANTOS CITY- A top New People’s Army (NPA) leader and his wife surrendered Tuesday in South Cotabato.
Colonel Roberto Ancan, 1002nd Infantry Brigade commander, said the surrender of Noel Legazpi, deputy secretary-general of Communist Party of the NPA inSouth Mindanao, and his wife, Wendy Bendalian, is a big blow to the communist underground movement in the region.
He said Legazpi and Bendalian, who also served as NPA medical staff, surrendered to the 27th Infantry Battalion following negotiation made by South cotabato Gov. Daisy Fuentes.
Legazpi, who served the underground movement for 26 years, supposedly opted to return to mainstream society after realizing the revolutionary struggle has lost the support of the people resulting from improved governance under the Duterte administration.
“The government had effectively delivered the needed social services to marginalized people in far-flung areas,” Legazpi said.
“I and my wife came to realize that the revolutionary struggle waged by the CPP-NPA isnow doomed to fail,” Legazpiadded.
Following the surrender of Legazpi and wife, Ancan said they are expecting more NPA rebels to yield.
Fuentes assured the two surrenderees of livelihood assistance under the local government’s Comprehensive Local Integration Program or CLIP.