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Here’s a realization from Ces Drilon 13 years after she has been held captive by the Abu Sayyaf.

CES DRILON – ABS-CBN broadcast journalist Ces Oreña-Drilon recalls the time when bandit group Abu Sayyaf kidnapped her and her crew.

The 9-day ordeal or the “nine-day journey to hell and back” as what ABS-CBN broadcast journalist Ces Oreña-Drilon would call her experience being held by the Abu Sayyaf militants is something that will never leave history. Abu Sayyaf is an Islamist extremist group known for its banditry in the South.

She and her crew cameraman Jimmy Encarnacion and his assistant Angelo Valderrama were abducted on their way to interview some of the members. They were held for ransom for nine days. She was scared to death. She denied that she was abused and shared that they were actually fed. However, there have been times where they were threatened.

Drilon shared before that a member has told her to put some makeup on so she’ll look beautiful if ever they send her head back to ABS-CBN. And after their ordeal, she faced suspension as news anchor of Bandila and as Senior Correspondent then for disobedience. She was told not to do it but still did that endangered the lives of other people which she also apologized for right after.

And now, 13 years after that miserable and death-edge experience, she confessed that being freed felt like she’s on her “second lease on life”. She learned accordingly a lot of things from that ordeal and one is gratitude. She said, “One of them is gratitude. Countless people prayed for me and I believe the power of their prayer in unison was heard by the universe. Ten days later we were released.”


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