As Cagayan de Oro City launches its Task Force on ending local communist armed conflict, it also unveils the site of its halfway house, a temporary residence that will serve as processing center for its former rebels.

Dubbed as Oro Kalandang Center, from the Higaonon term “kalandang” which means peace, this Peace Center is located at Sitio Aura, Mambuaya, Cagayan de Oro City and is set to be completed by 4th quarter of this year to cater approximately 30 former rebels.

Under the Enhance Comprehensive Local Integration Program (E-CLIP), the Department of the Interior and Local Government provided Php 5-Million for the Phase 1 of the project while the City provided another Php 5-Million as its LGU-counterpart, being its priority project.

DILG Undersecretary for Peace and Order. Bernardo C. Florece, Jr. pledged for the continuous necessary support of the Department in the attaining the goals of this project.

“The goal of Cagayan de Oro City is also the goal of the country as a nation—especially when it comes to finally ending local communist armed conflict. This is why our Department is just here for Cagayan de Oro, willing and ready to provide needed assistance when it comes to these matters,” he said.

On the other hand, a former rebel extended his gratitude to the government for giving them another chance to go back to mainstream society, in the hopes that other rebels will also choose the path he had taken.

Gitawag nako ang uban mga rebelde nga mayo nga mu-surrender na kay dili tinuod nga masulbad ang kalisod sa tawo kon dili ta muduyog sa gobyerno [I encourage the other rebels to already surrender because there is no truth that poverty will end if we turn our backs against the government,” he said.

As of February 6, 2020, 71 out of 80 barangays have already created their respective Barangay Task Force on ELCAC through the issuance of Executive Order and BDC-BPOC Joint Resolution. Moreover, all of the barangays already submitted copies of their resolution declaring CPP-NPA as persona non grata/resolution condemning all forms of terrorism activities.