Army rescue child NPA courier in Samar
By 2Lt. JELYNNE UNABIA, 34th IB
SAN JORGE, Samar – The
Presidential Decree 603 (Child and Youth Welfare Code); Republic Act
7610 (providing for special protection of children against child
abuse, exploitation and discrimination) and the Anti-Violence against
Women and Their Children Act (RA 9262) which defines violence against
women and their children, providing for protective measures for
victims and penalties for the perpetrators of the violence. But these
laws are constantly violated by the New Peoples Army in Samar.
On 06 June 2009, the
34th Infantry (Reliable) Battalion had negotiated and
talked to Hon. Leonardo S. Berbes, Ex-Brgy Chairman of Brgy. Hinayagan,
Gandara, for the surrender of a child courier of the CPP/NPA by the
name of Joel Silverstre alias Dayocdoc, a 12 years old and a native of
Brgy. Montalban, Matuginao, Samar.
According to Hon.
Leonaldo S. Berbes, this child had been used by the NPA as their
courier for almost a year. He is in charged of the collection of
Revolutionary Taxes of the populace, a look-out for government troops
operating in the area and as an errand boy to buy foods and supplies
for the members of the NPA and was also taught how to fire a gun.
Joel Silverstre is an
orphan and had stop schooling. His mother died years ago and his
father had left them without support and worked in
His likes for gun and adventurism were used by the NPA and recruited
him as their courier at the age of 11 years old. According to him, he
was promised by the NPA that he will be given a firearm once he is
also capable of handling one, for the meantime he will first serve as
LtCol. Dionisio C.
Miguel, commanding officer of the 34IB, had given orders for the
immediate turn over of the child to the Department of Social Welfare
and Development (DSWD) to undergo consultation and that this unit is
committed to uphold the standard and policies for the welfare and
protection of children in our Area of Operation. This unit also
condemns the CPP/NPA of using children as their courier and