Armed forces chief of staff General Andres Centino (PN photo)

Armed forces chief of staff General Andres Centino has given the 3rd Marine Brigade (3MBde) five months to capture the last known NPA leader in Palawan.

General Centino issued the ultimatum during his address at the Western Command headquarters Friday to preside over WESCOM’s Change of Command ceremony.

Vice Adm. Ramil Roberto Enriquez turned over his command to Rear Adm. Alberto Carlos.

“For the one person remaining, I think five months is enough,” Centino said.

Brigadier General Jimmy Larida, commander of the 3rd Marine Brigade (3MBde), in response said “five months are enough” to capture the NPA leader identified as Ka Miggy. He added that they are still “giving him a chance to surrender”.

After a series of encounters and the surrender of numerous NPA members in the province, notably Justine Kate Raca (alias Ka Mira) and Jose Maria Masong (alias Ka Degret), only NPA leader Sonny Rogelio (alias Ka Miggy) remains at large.

“Challenge accepted. Nakikita na natin na ang Palawan ay magiging insurgency-free. Umabot tayo dito sa point na sunod-sunod ang pagsuko, engkwentro, recovery ng kanilang war materials sa kanilang former hide outs. Iisa na lang ang ating hinahanap, ang commander Ka Miggy. Ang limang buwan ay tamang-tama,” Larida said.

Larida emphasized that if Ka Miggy refuses to surrender, there will be no other option but to undertake a manhunt to apprehend him.

He stated that they also have knowledge about Ka Miggy’s whereabouts based on information provided by his former colleagues in the leftist movement.

“The next phase to comply with the deadline is the manhunt. Isa na lang siya kaya lahat ng puwersa ay nakatutok na sa kanya. Mayroon tayong mga lead [kung nasaan sya] base na rin sa mga revelation ng mga former rebels,” Larida said.