Guv notes decline of NPA activities in Apayao

Jonathan Llanes

THE continuing response of government addressing the local concerns of Apayao residents have brought down the cases of communist led activities by the New People’s Army (NPA) in the province.

Apayao Governor Elias Bulut Jr. explained the maintenance of its peace advocacy under the internal insurgency campaign to be the essential part on why the activities have gone down.

“We have and continue to address the concerns of the people particularly in the former stronghold of the NPA in the province, where the issue on livelihood assistance has been the foremost concern,” the governor said.

Bulut stressed the importance of having a concrete plan and good direction including the maintenance of peace and order to pursue the development of the province.

“To date, the Provincial Government is seeking to uplift first the life of their rice and corn farmers who are members of a cooperative to boost their capabilities before extending to other farm groups to be sure of the target beneficiaries,” Bulut explained.

Bulut added that close to 200 individuals have been recruited into the army as part of its personal development and to empower their families by having one of its own to be its bread winner.

Aside from improving its road network which employs the people of Apayao, the tourism industry is slowly picking up.

The governor made an example of the Marag Valley which used to be abandoned during the height of the rebellion by the NPA against government.

Marag Valley has now become a tourism destination.

With Apayao’s population pegged at 1.6 percent every year, the Provincial Government have gathered and consolidated its development program for the next 10 years gearing up for possible investments in the province, and prospects of employment for the people.