The 5th Scout Ranger Battalion headed by a Negrense, Lt. Col. Marlo Jomalesa, is now in Sulu province, to help neutralize and defeat the Abu Sayyaf terrorist group.
Jomalesa said yesterday that they arrived in Sulu Feb. 5 after almost two months rest and a series of trainings in Zamboanga City, following several months of battle with the ISIS-inspired Maute terrorist group in Marawi.
The 5SRB was immediately deployed in Marawi City, after its activation in June last year, with Jomalesa, of Silay City, Negros Occidental, as the first battalion commander.
Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez, AFP Western Mindanao Command chief, said in a statement he issued that he anticipates that the 5SRB “ will do well in defeating the threats in Sulu as you did a great job in leading the fight to liberate Marawi City from the claws of the terrorists”.
The 5SRB is under the supervision of Joint Task Force Sulu headed by Brig. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana, a Medal of Valor awardee, who used to be assigned in northern Negros.
Jomalesa was among the recipients of Order of Lapu Lapu, that was conferred on him by President Rodrigo Duterte during the 68th Scout Ranger founding anniversary at Camp Tecson in Bulacan.
Five members of the 5SRB, including a junior officer, were also awarded Gold Cross Medals for gallantry during the series of firefight against the Maute Group last year in Marawi City.
The awardees were First Lt. Jay-arr Quiapo, Sgt. Gerry Gaspar Padayogdog, Sgt. Antonio Bas, Corporal Lisan Aspacio and Corporal Rodrigo Novilla. * GPB
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