Like the towns of Alimodian, Calinog,Janiuay, Maasin, Lambunao, and Tubungan, the next three towns are also expectedto organize their MTF-ELCAC. The Army battalion commander saidskirmishes and encounters transpired in the towns of Igbaras and Miag-ao in thepast months. These are the towns of Miag-ao, SanJoaquin and Igbaras, all from the 1st District, said Lieutenant Colonel JoelBenedict Batara, 61IB commander. The first batch identified as ELCACareas were the towns of Alimodian, Calinog, Janiuay, Maasin, Lambunao, andTubungan. Former rebels have revealed that the Communist Party of the Philippines – New People’s Army are recruiting new members from Miag-ao, Igbaras and San Joaquin, says Lieutenant Colonel Joel Benedict Batara, commander of the Philippine Army’s 61st Infantry Battalion. ILOILO City – Three towns in Iloilo provincewill be the next focus of the campaign to end local communist armed conflict(ELCAC), according to the 61st Infantry Battalion (61IB) of the Philippine Army. “All of them pledged that theirMTF-ELCAC will be activated this year,” he said, noting that the PhilippineArmy is monitoring the activities of the task force. (PNA/PN) “It is already programmed which areas tofollow, and these are the towns of Miagao, San Joaquin and Igbaras. In time, itwill be the whole of Iloilo because we already have a task force that isfocused against communists,” Batara said. The six towns have all complied withtheir commitment to the Department of Interior and Local Government(DILG)-Iloilo to create their respective Municipal Task Force to End LocalCommunist Armed Conflict (ELCAC) by the end of November. “The insurgency affectation in thesetowns is really observed because there are still some who believe that armedrebellion is the solution to the problems,” said Batara. Batara said the efforts of the localchief executives of the three towns against insurgency are already seenespecially in its construction of road networks. “These towns have constructed roads.They really have a goal to end the insurgency. The communist rebels do not likeroad networks because they would become more accessible to military troops. Forus, we know roads are for development because, in due time, the delivery ofservices will be faster,” he said. Former rebels revealed that these townswere also subject to the recruitment and other activities of the CommunistParty of the Philippines – New People’s Army (CPP-NPA). Meanwhile, he said the six townscurrently hold orientation sessions of the Retooled Community Support Program(RCSP) or the frontline program in village immersions in bringing the basicservices of the government to the public.