A FIELD commander of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) and 10 of his followers have surrendered in the province of Maguindanao, military officials said Sunday, December 19, 2021.
Lieutenant General Alfredo Rosario Jr., Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom) chief, said the BIFF leader identified only as Alias OB10 and his cohorts surrendered in the afternoon of Saturday, December 18, in Kamasi village, Ampatuan, Maguindanao.
OB10 is the 2nd Division Field commander of the BIFF-Bungos Faction.
“This significant breakthrough exemplifies that the government forces continue to gain ground in the campaign against terrorism. Rest assured that we will never falter until lasting peace is attained in Central Mindanao and the entire operational area of the Western Mindanao Command. I also enjoin everyone to be with us in this quest,” Rosario said.
The BIFF surrenderers were subsequently presented to Colonel Pedro Balisi Jr., commander of 1st Mechanized Infantry Brigade; Datu Piang Mayor Victor Samama; and Datu Anggal Midtimbang Mayor Nathaniel Midtimbang.
Balisi said the surrender of OB10 and his 10 followers was a result of collaborative efforts of the 2nd Mechanized Infantry Battalion led by Lieutenant Colonel Samuel Nadala Jr., 6th Infantry Battalion led by Lieutenant Colonel Charlie Banaag and police authorities of Maguindanao and Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (Barmm).
The BIFF surrenderers handed over to military authorities two 5.56 millimeter (mm), one M16 rifles, one M14 rifle, one Springfield rifle, two Garands, two locally-made RPGs, and two locally-made Barret Sniper rifles.
Major General Juvymax Uy, Joint Task Force (JTF)-Central commander, commended the efforts of the security forces in the area.
“The synergy between the security forces is tantamount to our advantage in fighting against local terrorists in this part of the region. We can successfully thwart the enemies’ ploys through our strong collaboration and cooperation,” Uy said.
“Rest assured the JTF-Central will continue to strengthen our relationship with the police and the local government units and will never stop hunting down the enemies of the state to ensure the safety of our people,” he added.
Since January, the JTF-Central has reported a total of 251 neutralizations, of which 86 were killed, 162 surrendered, and three were apprehended. (SunStar Zamboanga)