REUNITED. A New People’s Army couple is reunited with their children after two years, at the headquarters of the Army’s 27th Infantry Battalion in Barangay Dalisay, Panabo City, Davao del Norte, on Thursday (Nov. 5, 2020). Sara Sausa and husband Jose were captured in a firefight with government forces in a hinterland area in Davao City last September. (Photo courtesy of Eastmincom)
DAVAO CITY – A New People’s Army (NPA) couple captured last September was reunited with their children on Thursday after not seeing them for two years.
In a statement on Friday, the Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom) said former communist rebels Sara Sausa and Jose Sausa were captured in a firefight in Calinan District here and brought to a hospital for treatment.
“They have undergone successful medical operations and (are) now in stable condition and recuperating,” Eastmincom said.
It said the troops brought the couple’s four children and their grandmother from San Fernando, Bukidnon to make the reunion possible.
“The movie-like reunion has poured tears of joy, not only to the Sausa family but also to the soldiers who witnessed the event inside the headquarters of (the) 27th Infantry ‘Action’ Battalion in Barangay Dalisay, Panabo City (Davao del Norte),” the command said.
Eastmincom quoted the couple’s daughter, Mary Rose – the eldest of the siblings – as saying that they managed to survive without their parents by living with their grandparents.
The situation deprived the children of their “parents’ love and care because of the NPA terrorists’ deceptive propaganda in recruiting innocent civilians,” it said.
“While the NPA terrorist breaks up families to advance their ideology, the government and military continuously exert efforts to reach out and lend a hand in bringing them together.”
Meanwhile, Sara said being reunited with her children was “an early Christmas gift for us.”
She also urged other NPA members to surrender and return to the fold of the law.
“We used to believe that the government would not help us, but (we) were wrong. They extended help, and all we have to do is cooperate,” Sara said in the dialect.
The NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. (PNA)