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Bacolod City, Philippines Saturday, February 14, 2015
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‘Cadiz dev't ready'

Cadiz City has been declared as peaceful and ready for further development, making it the second local government unit in Negros Occidental declared as such.

Cadiz City Vice Mayor Samson Mirhan and Col Jon. Aying, 303rd Infantry Brigade commander, led security and local government officials in the signing of declaration and peace covenant on Thursday in Cadiz City.

Present was Ma. Joy Maredith Madayag, provincial officer of the Department of Interior and Local Government, and members of the City Peace and Order Council.

Also present were LTC CORDOVA, 62IB Commander; P/Supt Gerardo Ulanday, Cadiz City Police Chief; F/Insp Gregorio AOtico III, Cadiz City Fire Marshall, Sangguniang Panlungsod Members; and, CPOC Members of Cadiz City.

Hinigaran town was the first Local Government Units in Negros Occidental to be declared as peaceful and ready for further development, because of the absence of any insurgency-related activity for more than two decades now, in concurrence with the Philippine Army and National Police.

Other parameters cited for declaring an area peaceful and ready for further development are positive indicators of improved delivery of social services, such as health services and wide reach of justice in its rural areas, and criminal activities are manageable by the PNP.

The city of Bacolod as well as the fourth district of Negros Occidental are being eyed to be declared next as such by local government and security officials. The signing is expected to take place by the end of March.

Similar efforts are underway in other districts of Negros Occidental to curb the influence of communist rebels, and turn over the lead role in maintaining internal security to local governments.

The armed fighters of the New People's Army in Negros have been placed by the military at about 200.

Priest-turned-rebel Frank Fernandez, spokesman of the National Democratic Front-Negros, and the spokespersons of other local NPA units however, disputed the military claims, saying that their controlled areas are expanding and their strength continues to grow.*GPB

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