MANILA - An Abu Sayyaf member, whose wife was among several women nabbed last month for being potential suicide bombers, surrendered to authorities in Sulu on Wednesday morning, together with four other militants and two supporters of the terror group, the military said.
The Joint Task Force Sulu (JTF-S) identified the Abu Sayyaf fighter as "Jaber", husband of "Nudsza", one of the 9 women apprehended by the military and police in different areas in Sulu last Feb. 19 and charged with illegal possession of explosives.
Jaber was reportedly under the leadership of deceased Abu Sayyaf leader Hatib Hajan Sawadjaan, and has been with the ASG since 2013, the JTF-S said in a statement. He joined the group of ASG sub-leader Ben Wagas when Sawadjaan died.
He told authorities that he usually carried a K3 machine gun aside from using an M-14 and armalite during encounters with the military, the task force said.
"Noong nalaman ko na naaresto ang asawa ko, nagpaalam ako kay Ben Wagas na magbakasyon para kunin ko yung mga anak namin at dalhin sa Zamboanga. Ang totoo, nakatawag na ako sa kaibigan ko na sundalo na gusto ko na bumaba," Jaber said.
Lt. Col. Nelicar Corsino, 15th Civil Military Operations Battalion commander, said Jaber is still undergoing custodial debriefing sessions.
Jaber has two children - a 3-year-old and a 5-month-old baby. His wife Nudsza earlier said she is a widow and that Jaber is already dead, said the JTF-S.
Authorities were also able to recover several firearms and ammunition from those who surrendered.
FROM THE ARCHIVES