Monday Nov, 28 2022 12:44:28 PM

Police, Army support peace task force in troubled town

Mindanao Peace Process • 06:45 AM Wed Nov 16, 2022
John M. Unson
 Personnel of the Army’s 90th Infantry Battalion guard a farm-to-market road in Pikit. (John Unson)

COTABATO CITY  - Security officials support the efforts of the Bangsamoro government to resolve the nagging security woes in Pikit, Cotabato where 34 people perished in gun attacks in the past 21 months.

No fewer than 10 people have also been killed in clashes between heavily armed groups in Pikit since 2020.

Major Gen. Roy Galido, commander of the Army’s 6th Infantry Division, said Tuesday their troops in Pikit had been directed to help the peace and reconciliation task force, created last Saturday by officials of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, pursue its security objectives in the area.

BARMM’s chief minister, Ahod Ebrahim, said they will involve leaders of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front in addressing the seemingly unending strife in the area.

Ebrahim is the chairman of the MILF’s central committee.

Most of the bloody incidents in Pikit happened in 22 of its more than 40 barangays that belong to BARMM’s Special Geographic Area, or SGA, in Cotabato province, which is under Region 12.

The SGA covers 63 barangays in different towns in Cotabato.

“Our troops in Pikit are also helping the local government unit there reconcile families locked in rido (clan wars) as part of a collective, multi-sector initiative to foster peace in the municipality,” Galido said.

Brig. Gen. Jamili Macaraeg, director of the Police Regional Office-12, said Tuesday they were elated with the creation by the BARMM government of a peace and reconciliation task force to focus on peace and order problems besetting Pikit.

“It’s creation augurs well with our law-enforcement and peacekeeping operations in the municipality,” Macaraeg told reporters. 


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