Happiness can be seen in the eyes of Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia when she received a bouquet of roses from the rebel returnees of Danao City on Friday, February 5.
Fifth District Board Member Andrei “Red” Duterte personally handed the bouquet with a note to the governor.
“Governor Gwen, salamat kaayo sa imong gihatag namo nga pinaskuhan nga bugas, de lata, ug kape. Salamat sa kanunay nga pag-pangga og pag-hinumdom namo," said the returnees in the note.
Duterte shared that last Christmas, the returnees approached him and asked if the governor still remembers them.
They said they still remember the goodness of the governor, he added.
Upon learning this, Garcia gave the returnees one sack of rice, canned goods, and coffee as her Christmas gift to them.
The bouquet of flowers was the former rebels' gift to the governor this Love Month to show their appreciation to her.
“Those flowers, product na nila sa bukid sa Danao kay daghan naman flower farms sa Danao pud sa kabukiran,” Duterte said.
During Garcia's first term as governor of the Cebu Province, many rebels surrendered to her.
To restart their lives, the Capitol gave them livelihood assistance worth P80,000.
“Iya man to usa ka project nga mamahimong insurgency-free ang Cebu, daghan siyang napa-surrender,” Duterte said.
Majority of the returnees are now farmers and construction workers. Some of them even joined the SugBusog program of the Cebu Provincial Government. (Mylen Manto)