Author: AC of S for CMO OG7


The 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division reaffirms its support for the commemoration of National Human Rights Consciousness Week here today, December 9, 2019.

During the flag raising ceremony, Col. Jose Randolf M. Sino Cruz, Assistant Division Commander for Retirees and Reservist Affairs, read the message of Lt. Gen. Gilbert I. Gapay, Commanding General, Philippine Army.

“Our organization will continue with its engagements with the youth in our communities in peace building and development programs. We will also continue to educate them and protect them from the dangers brought by exposure to radicalization and violent extremism.”

“Let us always remember that the peace and prosperity that we all aspire for can be achieved with our fellow soldiers and citizens helping each other and standing on solid foundation built on mutual trust and respect for one another.” Lt. Gen. Gapay.




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CAMP SANG-AN, Pulacan, Labangan, ZDS – The Annual General Inspection for the 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division was culminated here yesterday, December 3, 2019.

The Office of the Inspector General, Philippine Army, headed by Brig. Gen. Gilbert F. Saret, lauded the 1ID’s leadership for its commendable findings that steered the unit in the accomplishment of mission.

Over-all performance, the command was able to obtain an excellent rating of 89.3 percent.

Two units and one office were also awarded with a Certificate of Recognition for obtaining a highest rating among other offices and units of the command.

The two units were 1st Signal Battalion, Army Signal Regiment; 1st Civil Military Operations Battalion of 1ID and the office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Education and Training, G8.

Brig. Gen. Bagnus P. Gaerlan Jr., the Acting Division Commander, expressed his gratitude to the inspecting team for their valuable services rendered to the command.

He also assured that the findings and gaps will be corrected and to strive more to accomplish the unit’s mission vis-à-vis boost the morale and welfare of the troops.

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CAMP SANG-AN, Pulacan, Labangan, ZDS – The two Communist NPA Terrorists (CNT) leaders who were arrested in a joint checkpoint operation by AFP and PNP troops in Brgy Dableston, Sultan Naga Dimaporo, Lanao del Norte, yesterday, have undergone inquest proceeding before the Lanao, del Norte prosecutor’s office today, December 2, 2019.

Accordingly, Christopher Cañete y Ruiz, known as Alias Glock and Virjon Virtudazo y Sagaysay also known as alias Thunder revealed the identities of other members of their group and some are allegedly hiding in plain sight.

They also revealed identities of their supporters, their locations and future plans. But details of their revelations are withheld for now pending further verification and investigation.

According to Brig. Gen. Bagnus Gaerlan Jr, the 1st Infantry Division and Joint Task Force Zampelan (Zamboanga Peninsula and Lanao Provinces) acting commander, the current successful arrest and previous armed engagement with NPAs and other threat groups were widely due to the AFP’s newly acquired imaging technology which will be further enhanced in the coming year.

He further invited local NPA members, which he described as the exploited ones, to lay down their arms and return to the folds of our law through our E-CLIP program.

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CAMP SANG-AN, Pulacan, Labangan, ZDS – Two Communist NPA Terrorists (CNT) leaders were apprehended in a joint checkpoint operation by the troops of 5th Mechanized Infantry Battalion, 49th Infantry Battalion and 2nd Maneuver Platoon, Regional Mobile Force Battalion, PNP in Brgy Dableston, Sultan Naga Dimaporo, Lanao del Norte, at 12:00 p.m. midnight, Sunday, December 1, 2019.

“The two were identified as Christopher Cañete y Ruiz or known as Alias Glock and Virjon Virtudazo y Sagaysay also known as alias Thunder” said Lt. Col. Rolando Orengo, 5th Mech Battalion Commander.

“Both were armed with one caliber .45 pistol, one caliber .38 revolver, an improvised explosive device and its paraphernalia and a rifle grenade during the apprehension”, he added.

During the custodial debriefing, Cañete and Virtuzado revealed to the troops an arms cache located in Brgy San Isidro, Kapatagan, Lanao del Norte.

Around 11:30 a.m. same day, the follow-up operation resulted into the discovery of seven M16 rifles, one AR18 rifle, one M203 Grenade Launcher, one caliber 38 revolver, 29 pcs. Bandoliers, 286 pcs. Magazines for m16 and 2,000 rounds of ammunitions.

According to Brig. Gen. Facundo Palafox IV, 2nd Mechanized Infantry Brigade Commander, who has operational jurisdiction of Lanao del Norte, “This is a big blow to the CNTs of the North Central Mindanao Regional Committee because both were occupying top positions in their organization”.

“Cañete is a commander of one of the guerilla front companies, while Virtuzado is in charge of the recruitment and brainwashing the minds of their recruits in hinterlands of Iligan, Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental area”, added Palafox.

Meanwhile, Brig. Gen. Bagnus Gaerlan Jr, the 1st Infantry Division and Joint Task Force Zampelan (Zamboanga Peninsula and Lanao Provinces) acting commander, commended the efforts of the troops for the apprehension of two and the discovery of CNT’s arms cache.

“This significant accomplishment will weaken the CNTs recruitment and organizational works in our area of operation”, Gaerlan said.

“We urged the youth, indigenous peoples and the locals to be more vigilant and report to our troops the presence of armed and other threat groups in their communities”, Gaerlan added.

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CAMP SANG-AN, Pulacan, Labangan, ZDS – A total of 20 loose firearms were turned over by the locals of Magsaysay, Lanao del Norte to the 5th Mechanized Battalion in the Municipal hall 10:00 a.m. Wednesday, November 27, 2019.

“The concerted effort and intensified collaboration among our troops, PNP, local communities, local chief executives and other stakeholders resulted into this momentous activity”, said Lt. Col. Rolando Orengo, 55th Mech Battalion Commander.

The turned-over loose firearms were consist of one FAL Caliber 7.62, one M14, three M16A1, one M635 with grenade launcher, four carbine rifles; and ten handguns.

Mayor Haron Omar Sr. who facilitated the turn-over of the loose firearms thanked the Army for their effort in sustaining peace and development in the municipality.

He also assured the continuous collaboration and support of the local government to the 5th Mech Battalion.

Meanwhile, Brig. Gen. Facundo Palafox IV, 2nd Mechanized Infantry Brigade Commander who has operational jurisdiction over Lanao del Norte said that “This is part of our campaign against proliferation of loose firearms so that our people would feel more secured and safe in their daily activities.”

Palafox also urged the locals to cooperate and report to proper authorities for the proliferation of firearms in their communities.

For his part, Brig. Gen. Bagnus Gaerlan Jr., the 1st Infantry Division and Joint Task Force Zampelan (Zamboanga Peninsula and Lanao Provinces) acting commander, lauded the troops, the local government unit and stakeholders of Magsaysay.

“I urge everyone to continue our efforts in pursuing lasting peace not just for Mindanao but for the whole country. Let us conquer the challenges ahead of us and step up the momentum in sustaining our gains for our common aspiration”, said Gaerlan.

Gaerlan also asked for the trust and support of the constituents, local government units and stakeholders to the Armed Forces of the Philippines who continuously strive to attain just and lasting peace in the country.

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CAMP SANG-AN, Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur – The Regional Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (RTF-ELCAC) for Region IX (ZAMPEN Region) launched its flagship program dubbed ZAMPEN (Zamboanga Peninsula) Area for Peace and Development or ZAPD in Brgy San Jose, Lapuyan last Tuesday, November 26, 2019.

ZAPD aims to synergize the efforts of all government agencies in the region and other partner NGOs for the clearing of CPP-NPA influenced areas and making cleared communities resilient from the resurgence of CPP-NPA influence.

In compliance to the EO 70, which is better known as the Whole Of Nation approach to end local communist insurgency, the concept of ZAPD is to bring development and security to vulnerable communities so that social issues which are encouraging our citizens to support and join the local insurgency will be addressed for good.

The activity was graced by USec Rene Glenn Paje, Undersecretary for Inclusive and Sustainable Peace, DSWD as guest of honor.

USec Paje was accompanied by Gov Victor J Yu of Zamboanga del Sur who is also very actively implementing his province’s version of the TF-ELCAC.

Lapuyan Mayor Joel Sulong, as host of the area, was also present to receive the guests and participants of the event, and to express his unconditional support to the program.

Also in attendance were Colonel Leonel Nicolas, the commander of the 102nd Infantry Brigade, Lieutenant Colonel Marlowe Patria, commanding officer of the 53rd Infantry Battallion, heads and representatives of regional offices.

After his message Governor Yu rang the traditional gong three times to symbolize the start of the ZAPD program, after which the RTF-ELCAC IX logo, which was mainly designed by the 1st Infantry Division, was officially unveiled by the distinguishes guests.

The program ended with signing of pledge of commitment to the program by the guests, IP leaders, and the locals.

During his speech Hon. Victor Yu, Governor of Zamboanga del Sur, assured the locals of Lapuyan that his administration is seriously implementing programs to bring about progress in conflict affected communities which includes Lapuyan. He also vowed to pave the road in the area to give the people of San Jose and its adjacent barangays better opportunities to prosper.

“I am happy to announce that with the RTF-ELCAC IX, more NPAs surrendered to our government forces. We also urged the local officials and leaders to discourage the constituents in supporting or joining the NPAs”, Yu said.

Meanwhile, Usec. Rene Glen Paje of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) who represented Sec. Rolando Bautista, during his speech said that, “The Task Force will deliver the basic services and encourage good governance. This will also answer the problem of peace and security in our communities”.

“I enjoin everyone to support the Regional Task Force ELCAC, the local government agencies and units in order to attain a just and lasting peace and sustainable development for our communities and for our future generations”, Paje added.

For his part, Brig. Gen. Bagnus Gaerlan Jr., the 1st Infantry Division and Joint Task Force Zampelan (Zamboanga Peninsula and Lanao Provinces) Acting commander, lauded the Local government units, government agencies, 53rd Infantry Battalion and 102nd Infantry Brigade for the momentous activity.

General Gaerlan quoted that “Inter-agency convergence will bring inclusive and sustainable development in the conflict affected communities in our area of operations. Convergence will speed up our clearing of the conflict affected areas and its development. We also encourage the NPAs to surrender and lay down their firearms and benefit from the programs of the RTF – ELCAC IX for the benefit of their families and their communities”.

In conjunction with the launching ceremony was an RTF-ELCAC IX Serbisyo Caravan which catered to more than 1000 locals who availed of the services which the various government agencies delivered to the area. The 1st Infantry Division also actively participated in the activity thru the 53rd IB and the 1CMOBn whose responsible for the facilitation of medical assistance and distribution of 300 pairs of slippers during the event.

After the launching ceremony, the RTF-ELCAC IX secretariat, together with Governor Yu proceeded to the ground-breaking ceremony of the Zamboanga del Sur half-way house for former rebels which was facilitated by the 53rd IB in Poblacion, Guipos. Former rebels who are currently beneficiaries of the government’s Rebel Reintegration Program were also presented during the event.

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CAMP SANG-AN, Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur – The 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division ceremonially started it’s 18-day campaign to end Violence Against Women (VAW) during the flag raising ceremony here Monday, November 25, 2019.

Based on the Republic Act 10398 of 2013, November 25 is declared as National Consciousness Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and Children (VAWC) in support of the Worldwide Campaign to End VAW.

This year’s campaign, themed “VAW-free community starts with Me”, will continue to emphasize the role of individuals in combatting violence against women and girls within various institutions including the command.

In support to the campaign, the command organized the Men Oppose to VAW Everywhere (MOVE). MOVE was originally organized in the year 2006 by the Philippine Commission on Women.

MOVE members vowed and committed themselves to be actively involved in the elimination of VAW. Command’s MOVE members were Deputies of the General, Technical and Special Staff; Deputy Brigade Commanders and Executive Officers of the Brigades and Battalions of line units.

During the activity, Col. Benjamin G. Batara Jr., Chief of Staff, 1ID, read the message of the Lt. Gen. Macairog S. Alberto, the Commanding General of the Philippine Army. While Brig. Gen. Bagnus P. Gaerlan Jr., Acting Division Commander, read the message of the Secretary of National Defense, Hon. Delfin N. Lorenzana.

Committee meeting was immediately conducted in order to review and determine the level of implementation of Gender and Development programs, activities and projects.

Brig. Gen. Gaerlan, together with the MOVE members, also signed the Commitment Wall as an assurance and testament of their support to end violence against women.

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Brig. Gen. Bagnus P Gaerlan Jr O-10090 AFP was designated as the acting commander of 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division upon reassignment and promotion of Maj. Gen. Roberto T Ancan as the commander of Central Command, AFP, based in Cebu City.

He was born on 26 May 1966 in San Juan La Union. A proud member of the Philippine Military Academy “MAKATAO” Class of 1989.

Upon graduation, he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant, served combat duty in Luzon with the Army’s 5th Infantry Division. He also held positions as Platoon Leader of Alpha Company 77IB; Company Commander of the 4th Scout Ranger Battalion, FSRR, SOCOM, PA.

Grig. Gen. Gaerlan also rendered service in training at the 5th Army Training Group, TRADOC, PA as Group Commander and as Commandant at the Combat Arms School, TRADOC, PA.

He served at Management Branch of OG1, OG3, PA; Secretary of Unified Command Staff and as Deputy U3 at Southern Command AFP; Commander 44IB, 1st Infantry Division, PA; Deputy Brigade Commander, 102nd Infantry Bde, 1st Infantry Division, PA and as the Brigade Commander, 102nd Infantry (IGSOON) Bde, 1st Infantry Division Philippine Army prior to his present designation as Acting Commander of 1st Infantry Division, Philippine Army.

He also took special duties to include: Vice-chairman Training Oversight Committee PA; Chairman, CS Pre-training Board Philippine Army; Member of the Awards and Decoration Board Southern Command Armed Forces of the Philippines and as Project Officer, Project Management Team Headquarters Philippine Army.

Brig. Gen. Gaerlan Jr is also a recipient of numerous awards, badges and medals, including (4) Distinguish Service Star, Gawad sa Kaunlaran,(37) Military Merit Medals,(16) Military Commendation Medals,(1) Bronze Cross Medal,(1) Distinguished Service Medal, Meritorious Achievement Medal, Military Civic Action Medal, Parangal sa Kapanalig, Long Service Medal, Gawad sa Kaunlaran, Sagisag ng Ulirang Kawal, and Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao-Sulu Anti-Dissidents Campaign Medal and Ribbon.







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CAMP SANG-AN, Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur – The 1st Infantry (TABAK) Division, Philippine Army activated the 11th Division Sniper Company here on Wednesday, November 20, 2019.

The 11th DSC is a highly specialized – force multiplier that will provide sniping capability to the Infantry Battalions of 1ID and can also conduct reconnaissance and surveillance operation to the supported units.

The company is composed of five officers and sixty-three enlisted personnel who were sniper-qualified and rifle experts that can shoot and neutralize targets or threat efficiently.

Brig. Gen. Bagnus Gaerlan Jr., Acting Division Commander and the keynote speaker of the ceremony, assured full support on the operational and administrative needs of the unit for the accomplishment of the assigned tasks.

“Neutralization of local terrorist groups and other threats in our area of operation will be easily achieve since they can shoot the targets proficiently”, said Gaerlan.

“To the snipers, I challenge you to train more and work with dedication and pride. I expect you to be as vigorous, brave and be committed to serve and secure our constituents in our area of responsibility”, Gaerlan added.


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The 6th Senior Enlisted Leaders Symposium CY-2019 with the Theme: “Propelling Excellence and Solidarity of Senior NCO Leaders Towards Accomplishment of Mission” was conducted here last 14-15 November 2019.

The activity was attended by all Sergeant Majors and Selected First Sergeants from organic units of the command.

The yearly activity of the Office of the Division Sergeant Major aims to:

a. Reinforce the leadership roles of the Senior NCOs in motivating their subordinates to become highly committed, competent and responsible soldiers;

b. To have a dialogue with the Senior NCOs and extract from them the issues and concerns that may affect the discipline, morale and welfare of the Enlisted Personnel Corps;

c. Provide a forum and feedback mechanism for the dissemination of new Higher Headquarters’ policies and directives;

d. Provide means for sharing of best leadership practices;

e. Develop camaraderie and fellowship among the NCO Corps;

f. Re-echo the important topics discussed during the symposium that were attended by our Division Sgt Major at HPA and GHQ, AFP;

g. Develop individual awareness and sensitivity in perceiving gender issues and inequalities in the Philippine Army as an organization, understand the importance of GAD in attaining gender equality and to develop the confidence to do Senior NCOs work as gender advocates; and.

h. Develop awareness of the participants on (Executive Order Nr 70) The national framework that contains principles, plans and programs that will bring inclusive and sustainable peace, and address the root causes of insurgencies, internal disturbances and tensions as well as other armed conflicts and threats in identified areas.

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