Thursday Nov, 30 2023 12:09:20 AM

Cross-section Pikit, Aleosan security efforts expanded

Mindanao Peace Process • 09:45 AM Thu Dec 22, 2022
John M. Unson
The inter-agency peace forum was held in Kidapawan City. (From BARMM parliament member Kadil Sinolinding, Jr.

COTABATO CITY - Local executives, the security sector and Presidential Peace Adviser Carlito Galvez, Jr. are to address together the nagging security problems in Bangsamoro barangays in Cotabato province.

Galvez, Cotabato Gov. Emmylou Taliño-Mendoza, Bangsamoro Local Government Minister Naguib Sinarimbo, members of the regional parliament, police and Army officials met Tuesday and agreed to cooperate in restoring law and order in troubled areas in Cotabato’s Pikit and Aleosan towns.

Galvez, a retired Army general, had served as commander of the Army’s 6th Infantry Division covering central Mindanao provinces, including Cotabato, before he got to the helm of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation and Unity.

Galvez told reporters, while in Camp Siongco in Datu Odin Sinsuat town in Maguindanao del Norte Wednesday, that their dialogue at the Cotabato provincial capitol in Kidapawan City was fruitful owing to the strong assurance of support from participants to efforts of maintaining law and order in troubled barangays in Pikit and Aleosan.

The forum, held at the Cotabato provincial capitol in Kidapawan City, was jointly facilitated by Galvez, Mendoza and the government of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao via its Ministry of the Interior and Local Government.

Mendoza is chairperson of the Cotabato provincial peace and order council and the multi-sector Regional Development Council 12 covering four provinces and four cities in Region 12.

Galvez said he is thankful to Mendoza and Sinarimbo for their continuing support to peace and security programs of municipal executives, the Army’s 602nd Infantry Brigade and the police in “security challenged” barangays in Pikit and Aleosan, grouped together as BARMM’s Special Geographic Area, or SGA. 

The MILG-BARMM has barangay hall projects in the 63 SGA barangays in different towns in Cotabato, meant to establish strong semblance of government in the local communities,  where voters voted in favor of the inclusion of their villages in the Bangsamoro core territory during a plebiscite in 2019.

“We can see how the BARMM leadership, through its local government ministry, the Cotabato provincial governor and municipal officials are doing their best to solve these problems,” Galvez said.

More than 40 people perished in the spate of unending gun attacks since 2021 in isolated barangays in Pikit and Aleosan

Five members of the Citizens Armed Forces Geographical Unit and three others, two of them barangay tanods, got killed in gunfights last December 9 in Barangay Tapudoc in Aleosan, where there is deep-seated animosity between non-Moro militiamen and Moro villagers.

Major Gen. Roy Galido, commander of 6th ID and three members of the Bangsamoro parliament, the physician Kadil Sinolinding, Jr., Kellie Antao and Datu Jambo Matalam, separately insinuated, during their dialogue in Kidapawan City, that cross-section cooperation will boost police and military peacekeeping missions in Pikit and Aleosan.

Galido and Galvez separately said Wednesday Sinolinding, Antao, Matalam and Sinarimbo have been reaching out to community elders and religious leaders in the troubled barangays for them to realize that their help is essential to inter-agency peace initiatives in Pikit and Aleosan

Mendoza has said her office is open to SGA residents who may need security and socio-economic support even as their barangays are now part of the BARMM territory. 



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