AFP chief vouches for National Task Force versus communist insurgency

Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benjamin Madrigal Jr looks forward to the operationalization of the Executive Order No. 70 or the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict in 2019.

In an interview Wednesday, January 2, Lt. Gen. Madrigal stressed the need for all government agencies – both national and local government units – to come together to totally eradicate the root causes of conflict and violence.

“We have made significant progress and have headways in our campaign to end insurgency, but to reach what we can call a complete victory, we need to create communities that are conflict-resilient and we need local and national government agencies to attain this,” Lt. Gen. Madrigal said.

In 2018, consolidated data from ground units of the AFP indicate a total of 12,017 CPP-NPA members and supporters have been neutralized.

The figure includes 130 that were killed and 264 that were apprehended in legitimate security and law enforcement operations.

A total of 11,623 have also surrendered including 1,227 regular NPA fighters. AFP units also confiscated 1,920 assorted firearms and seized 316 enemy encampments.

Madrigal added that a series of meetings and plannings is on-going to operationalize E.O. Nr 70 and create a National Peace Framework anchored on the Whole-of-Nation approach institutionalized as a national policy.

“Aside from focusing on our enemies, we also have to look at our people and communities through a people-centered strategy to make our communities resilient from communist recruitment, propaganda, and exploitation,” Lt. Gen. Madrigal said. Armed Forces of the Philippines