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Duterte offers fresh start to NPA rebels: Drop your guns, I’ll give you a house and job

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President Rodrigo Duterte is offering a chance to members of the New People’s Army to start anew if they will surrender to the government.

In a speech at the opening of a new Gaisano mall in Davao City Friday (October 19), Duterte called NPA rebels his “friends” whom he doesn’t want to kill.

Addressing the communist fighters, he said: “Your underground movement will not amount to anything. But I am ready to accept you if you surrender. Bring your firearms, give it to me, and I will give you a house and a job. You can be sure of that.”

Duterte said the government will even foot the bill for the surrendering rebels to learn new skills at the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).

“Set down your arms and we will not have a problem. If you wish to join politics, okay lang. Drop the firearms, drop the gun, and we will not have a problem. We will not be just friends, but Filipino brothers and sisters,” he said.

Duterte said he doesn’t want to fight with NPA rebels because soldiers and policemen die in the process.

The government stopped peace talks with the NPA’s ideological and political arms, the Communist Party of the Philippines and National Democratic Front, last year due to the rebels’ attacks on uniformed personnel and civilians. The negotiations have yet to formally start again.