Wednesday Dec, 06 2023 09:26:49 PM

Leaders see peace, progress in 2023

GOVERNANCE/POLITICS • 11:45 AM Thu Jan 5, 2023
John M. Unson
The Bangsamoro regional capitol in Cotabato City. (John Unson)

COTABATO CITY - Local and military officials in Region 12 and the Bangsamoro Region are certain of more gains in Malacañang’s Mindanao peace process in 2023.

Three members of the Bangsamoro parliament, Physician Kadil Sinolinding, Jr., the lawyers Suharto Ambolodto and Paisalin Tago, separately told Mindanao Cross last weekend that they are optimistic of more improvements in peace and order in the autonomous region in 2023.

They separately expressed willingness to cooperate in formulating regional laws that can protect the gains of Malacañang’s Mindanao peace process.

“No one else can best help President Marcos. Jr. address the peace and security and economic woes in our communities but us, Moro leaders,” Tago, who is also BARMM’s transportation and communications minister, said.  

Sinolinding, now most known as “doctor sa parliamento ng Bangsamoro,” said one of his main concerns now is to help maintain law and order in the 63 barangays in North Cotabato province together grouped as the Special Geographic Area of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Lanao del Sur Gov. Mamintal Adiong, Jr. said there were considerable improvements in peace and order in his province from January to December this year, for him a tacit indication that they are in for peaceful days in 2023.

The Lanao del Sur provincial peace and order council, units of the Army’s 103rd Infantry Brigade and the Lanao del Sur Provincial Police Office together worked out the surrender of 53 members of the Dawlah Islamiya in the past 11 months.

Bangsamoro Labor Minister Muslimin Sema, also MNLF, said Saturday their front’s central committee shall keep supporting the president’s peace efforts for Moro communities.

“We have done that in 2022 and years before. We shall do it with vigor in 2023,” Sema said.

Sema said he is very sure that the cooperation of the MNLF and the MILF in furthering the peace and development agenda of the Bangsamoro government will bear more “dividends” in 2023.

Officials of the 6th Infantry Division told Mindanao Cross said it was in 2002 that a precedent in the surrender of more than a hundred NPAs to different Army units under 6th ID.

Major Gen. Roy Galido, 6th Infantry Division chief, said Saturday he will see to it that his successor shall continue 6th ID's peace efforts that have resulted in the surrender of more than a hundred members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, the Dawlah Islamiya and the NPA in recent months.

“Credit for the surrender of these enemies of state goes to the provincial governors, the mayors, the vice mayors, the traditional leaders and peace advocacy groups in areas inside 6th ID’s area of responsibility,” said Galido who was also named chief of Western Mindanao Command (Wetmincom) based in Zamboanga City.

North Cotabato Gov. Emmylou Mendoza said she and her constituent-mayors are pleased seeing President Marcos sustain Mindanao peace programs started by his predecessors.

There are Moro communities in some of Cotabato’s 17 towns where there are government-recognized enclaves of the Moro National Liberation Front and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. Both fronts have separate peace agreements with the national government.

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