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8th ID: Samar remains a big challenge in insurgency

By NINFA B. QUIRANTE (PIA Samar)
September 24, 2009

CATBALOGAN, Samar  –  Samar remains a big challenge to the army when it comes to crushing insurgency.

Commanding General of 8th Infantry Division (8th ID) Arthur Tabaquero said in a press conference on Friday, September 18, 2009 aired at DYMS.

Although army officials assured Samarnons that it is on the right timing in its goal of crushing insurgency, still Samar remains a big challenge for the army, Col. Alexander Cabales deputy commander chimed in.

The most recent NPA attacks like the attack in Cancaiyas, Basey, the murder of Fr. Cecilio Lucero, and the attack of one army element of 543rd Engineer Brigade kept the army reeling.

Despite the attack to non-army combatants, the army said Tabaquero, will continue to construct infra projects like those of the Kalayaan sa Barangay Program and that attacks will never hinder the developmental projects envisioned by PGMA.

The army, said Tabaquero, right now shoulders the medical needs of the NPA wounded and captured in the encounter with the 543rd Engineer Brigade.

Tabaquero offered to Samar’s officials to emulate Bohol and Gov. Enrico Aumentado’s Team Bohol.

He added that the transformation of Bohol did not happen overnight, that like any mission, the Bohol experience also suffered dark days but Aumentado’s political will paif odd eventually.

As to the NPA atrocities, Cabales said the NPAs would like to project a ‘force to reckon’ with so that come elections, they will still be given ‘permit to campaign fees’ a clear milking cow of the leftists, he averred.

Presently, the 8th ID, said Tabaquero, continues to push civil military operations and continues to reach out for a good relationship.

He then urged the local chief executives to help them, by providing basic services to the influenced barangays and to the people to support the anti insurgency campaign of the Arroyo government.