MILF leaders to realize dev’t in 6 former camps

Posted on Tuesday, July 14th, 2015 and is filed under Lead Stories. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

COTABATO CITY, 14 July 2015 – Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) camp commanders are set to implement development  in six previously acknowledged MILF camps located in the Maguindanao and Lanao provinces, following   a  three-day formal training with representatives of government line agencies in this city.

The Area Development Planning (ADP) Workshop set here from 9 to 11 July convened MILF commanders, and government military and agriculture officials to discuss and lay down details in transition plans for the MILF camps into peaceful and productive communities. Both GPH and the MILF participants are expected to collaborate post-training on formulating the priority development plans in the six sites.

Under the Annex on Normalization, the GPH and the MILF mutually agreed to constitute joint task forces that “will assess the needs, plan appropriate programs, and undertake the necessary measures to transform these areas into peaceful and productive communities”.

These areas are in the vicinity of former MILF Camp Abubakar as-Siddique, Camp Badre, and Camp Omar ibn al-Khattab in Maguindanao; Camp Rajamuda in North Cotabato and Maguindanao; Camp Bilal in Lanao del Norte and Lanao del Sur; and

Moro Islamic Liberation Front commanders convene in Cotabato City for a 3-day development planning workshop with Philippine government representatives as an initial step towards the implementation of a planned program of developing former MILF camps into peaceful and productive communities. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENTIAL ADVISER ON THE PEACE PROCESS

in Lanao del Sur.

The six camps were identified and acknowledged in 1999 during the term of former President Joseph Estrada in order to facilitate the observance of the 1997 ceasefire agreement.  However, an all-out war was waged against the MILF in 2000. The MILF withdrew from some of these camps, notably Camps Abubakar and Omar.

Mohamad Saleh, MILF Task Force Camps Transformation Coordinator, expressed his deep gratitude to the national government for its “commitment to achieve genuine peace and development in Mindanao.”

The work of the Joint Task Forces in each of the six sites is one of the confidence-building measures provided in the Annex on Normalization, an integral part of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro which the Government and MILF Panels signed in March 2014.

“The peace dividends must already be felt by the people in our communities as soon as possible,” Saleh said.

Former Agriculture Secretary and GPH Peace Panel member Senen Bacani briefed participants on the rudiments of area development planning. He also urged the participants to identify quick-response projects that will address immediate needs of the communities such as electricity, water supply system, minor infrastructure and quick gestation livelihood projects.

“These efforts should continue because we are all Filipinos and we should provide assistance to those who need help,” Bacani said.

The three-day workshop was facilitated by Roberto “Roy” Tordecilla, World Bank Senior Expert and Engr. Nasser Sinarimbo. (Ref: OPAPP)

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