Charlene and Jimboy Juan reunite with their mother Rosalie Juan and another family member on December 23, 20202, in Coron town. The reunion happened after the siblings surrendered voluntarily to government troops. | Photo by 3rd Marine Brigade

 

Former rebels Charlene and Jimboy Juan reunited with their mother Rosalie Juan Wednesday afternoon in Coron after not seeing each other for over two years.

3rd Marine Brigade spokesperson Cpt. Orchie Bobis said Charlene’s and Jimboy’s reunion with their mother was a gift from the Joint Task Force Peacock (JTFP) under the command of 3rd Marine Brigade (3MBde) commander Brig. General Nestor Herico.

 

The Juan family with Charlene, Jimboy, another sibling, and their mother Rosalie in their home in Barangay Guadalupe, Coron. | Photo by 3rd Marine Brigade

She said the siblings were met on the island town by mayor Mario Reyes who committed to provide them work or livelihood support so they can successfully return to their community in Barangay Guadalupe.

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“Ang gusto kasi ni Gen. Herico ay ma-reunite sila with their mother na si manang Rosalie lalo na ngayong magpa-pasko. Makakasama na nila ang nanay nila at iba pang miyembro ng pamilya dahil natapos na ang documentation nila sa kanilang pagbabagong buhay,” she said.

“Doon na sila. Ang sabi ni mayor Mario Reyes, bibigyan sila ng trabaho o home-based na pagkakakitaan. Pipili lang sila kung ano sa dalawa para makapamuhay sila ng maayos ngayong bagong taon,” Bobis added.

Jimboy surrendered voluntarily in September this year after the encounter in Brooke’s Point that killed five New People’s Army (NPA) leaders. Charlene, on the other hand, abdicated and surrendered to the Marine Battalion Landing Team-3 in November in Roxas.

 

Charlene and Jimboy Juan meet with Coron mayor Mario Reyes at the covered gym of the municipality following their arrival on December 23. | Photo by 3rd Marine Brigade

Jimboy’s surrender came after the raid of their camp in the hinterlands of Brooke’s Point, which killed Bonifacio “Salvador Luminoso” Magramo; Andrea “Ka Naya” Rosal, daughter of late NPA spokesperson Ka Roger Rosal and deputy secretary of the group; Noel “Ka Celso” Siasico, the NPA’s front operational command leader; Ren “Ka Amir” Manalo, and a certain “Ka RJ”

He said previously that he was already planning to surrender before the encounter due to the hardship of living in the mountains.

“‘Yong naranasan kong hirap d’yan ay ‘yong maglakad ng gabi. Minsan natatapilok at nadudulas kaya hindi ka makalakad. Gutom at ‘yong maglakad kami ng malayo,” Jimbo said.

His sister Charlene surrendered with Reden Gatosan Angkik (Ka Justine, Jaguar, Jonas, and Arjay); Evelyn Eno Rodriguez, (Ka Laisa); Robin Jalain Baylosis (Ka Marlo and Mayor), and Jukiter Rundukan Gindaya (Ka Armak and Frankie).

After undergoing COVID-19 protocols, the siblings were taken to the covered court at the town center where they cried and hugged their mother Rosalie.

“Gabi-gabi akong nananalangin na bumaba na ang mga anak ko pati ang asawa ko. Bawat pasko kulang ang pamilya namin kasi wala sila,” Rosalie said as she expressed gratitude to the 3MBde and the Palawan Provincial Task Force ELCAC for making their reunion possible two days before Christmas.

First meal together after a long time. | Photo by 3rd Marine Brigade

Rosalie said her happiness will be complete if her husband Ronaldo will also think of their family and surrender to authorities to be able to rejoin them.

She said she is not aware of where Ronaldo is now because he is no longer “contacting” her.

Rosalie added that whenever he calls him, Ronaldo is not the one answering.

“Nagpapasalamat din ako at tinrato nila ng maayos ang mga anak ko para makabalik sa amin dito. Masayang-masaya po ako. Mas masaya kung nandito din ang asawa ko… kung sana nakaisip na rin siyang sumuko sa inyo (3MBde),” she added.

“Pinapanalangin ko rin gabi-gabi, sana makaisip din siyang magsuko kasi itong dalawang anak niya andito na… para maging masaya na kami at mabuo. Matanda na rin ako, matanda na rin siya… sana bago kami magtanda ng husto dapat mabuo na kami para masaya,” Rosalie said.

Herico said that the Juan family was the second they were able to reunite after the Gumanoys who got separated from their sister for 11 years.

“Nasaksihan natin ang pagtatagpo ng mag-anak na pinagwatak ng komunista-teroristang CPP-NPA-NDF, noong nakaraang taon ay sa pamilyang Gumanoy na 11 taong nawalay sa isa’t-isa at ngayon sa pamilyang Juan. Pinapaalala ko sa lahat ng magulang na protektahan ang kanilang mga anak mula sa panlilinlang ng komunistang grupo,” Herico said.

“Dalangin ko ang maligayang pasko sa pamilyang Juan, sana ay maisip na rin ng kanilang padre de pamilya at ng mga kasamahan nito sa bundok na bumaba at tanggapin ang pagbabagong buhay na inaalok ng ating pamahalaan sa bawat rebeldeng sumusuko,” he added.

According to Bobis, the JTFP Anti-Terrorism update for 2020 records five NPA leaders killed in an encounter, 16 surrenderees, and 86 individuals who withdrew their support to the rebel group.

She said that based on the information from the former rebels, there are 15 remaining rebels within the group.

“Base nga sa ulat ng mga dating rebelde na sumuko, 15 na lang silang nasa loob at mahihina ang armas nila, kaya’t muli nananawagan ang aming Commander ng mapayapang pagbaba ng iilang rebelde. Mas masaya ang bawat pasko ng bawat isa kung ibababa nila ang kanilang armas sa tahimik at hindi madugong pamamaraan,” Bobis said.

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is the chief of correspondents of Palawan News. She covers defense, politics, tourism, health, and sports stories. She loves to travel and explore different foods.