Camp Navarro, Calarian, Zamboanga City – November 23-24, 2022

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Secretary Clarita Carlos, the National Security Adviser and Vice-Chairperson of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC), visited Zamboanga City on November 23-24, 2022.

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She spearheaded the conduct of the first Regional Development and Security (RDS) Forum with the local chief executives of Region IX on November 23, 2022. The forum was conducted to reiterate the guidelines on the implementation of Executive Order No. 70 in the region. The local chief executives of Region IX led by Zamboanga City Mayor John Dalipe joined Secretary Carlos and the other members of NTF-ELCAC Cluster representatives during the interaction held at Palacio del Sur, Governor Camins Avenue, Zamboanga City.

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Secretary Carlos also visited Western Mindanao Command on Thursday, November 24, and paid a courtesy call to Brig. Gen. Arturo Rojas, Acting Commander of Western Mindanao Command. She also met and interacted with some of the former members of the communist terrorist group who are now collectively called “Friends Rescued”.

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Brig. Gen. Antonio Nafarrete, Commander of Joint Task Force ZamPeLan; Police Brig. Gen. Neil Alinsañgan, Regional Director of Police Regional Office 9; Col. Randolph Rojas, Commander of Joint Task Force Zamboanga; Col. Elmer Suderio, WestMinCom’s Chief of Unified Command Staff; the Triad Staff of WestMinCom; and other military and police officials joined Brig. Gen. Rojas in welcoming the National Security Adviser during her visit to the unit’s headquarters at Camp Navarro, Calarian, same city.

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Brig. Gen. Rojas said, “The synergized efforts of all AFP units and our stakeholders utilizing the NTF-ELCAC mechanisms resulted in the decrease of the overall capabilities of the threat groups in our area of operation. At the start of the campaign, the command confronts five guerilla fronts but as we are about to end the campaign, our relentless and effective efforts have caused the dismantling of three of the five guerilla fronts.”

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Secretary Carlos commended the Western Mindanao Command for all the significant accomplishments and successful campaigns. She also urged the military officials to sustain the momentum and carry on the good work.

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During her series of engagements in Zamboanga City, Secretary Carlos was accompanied by Retired Lt. Gen. Emmanuel Salamat, Executive Director of the NTF-ELCAC and Retired Brig. Gen. Camilo Balutan, Regional Director of the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency 9 (NICA 9).

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