Duterte says will to go to NPA camp to urge them to surrender
President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday said he is willing to go to the camp of the New People’s Army ( NPA) to encourage them to surrender to the government.
In an unannounced visit at the 8th Infantry Division of Philippine Army in Camp General Vicente Lukban at Catbalogan, Duterte told the NPA rebels anew to lay down their arms.
“I'm offering you land. I am offering you- I will pay you to learn a new skill so that you can live. You are surrounded with a body of water that is full of marine life. You can do tuna canning, you’ll get rich. You will contribute on the food of Filipinos. Some of you were not able to see your child, you just get buried there in the forest,” he said.
“We keep on accepting (surrenderees). I have a program, I will build a home, I will give you job… Problem is you are not here. I really want to go their fields,” said Duterte.
Duterte vowed to provide them at least one-third of government funds that they need if they will just surrender.
“If you can talk (to me), I have no problem with that. Just drop your weapons, stop fighting and we will talk. And I can give you right away one-third of what you are asking. One-third, one-third, one- third is one," said Duterte.
“Let’s share the money of our country so that the lives of Filipinos be better but if you remain to fight… that’s your problem,” he said.
Duterte said he cannot understand why there are still communist rebels when there are no communists anymore in other countries.
“They have been fighting 53 years against the government… And they never can hope really to win a war. The Filipino does not want (that),” he said.
“I cannot understand what kind of thinking you have… I mean choose a better fight in life. Something that is good for your children,” he said.
Duterte said he will never run out of soldiers and the NPA will be outnumbered but it’s useless to use all the procured guns and bullets against Filipinos.
“I will return here. Just tell me when they want to talk to me, I’ll visit them and I will tell them to stop (what they are doing). So that I can use the money for your welfare, for the Filipinos,” he said.
“I’m spending for bullets. I’m spending for guns. And who do I kill? The Filipino. Useless. I feel pity for all of you but if you choose the way of life, it’s up to you... what I said is I want peace,” he added. Ella Dionisio/DMS