From the Philippine News Agency (Feb 19): Aquino signs AO creating Task Force on Bangsamoro
President Benigno S. Aquino III has created the Task Force on Bangsamoro
Development to develop and implement programs and projects for the Moro Islamic
Liberation Front (MILF) communities as well as internally-displaced and
poverty-stricken communities throughout Mindanao.
The Chief Executive ordered the creation of the task force by virtue of
Administrative Order No. 37, Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte
announced during the regular press briefing in Malacanang Tuesday.
The AO No. 37 was signed by Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. Feb 13.
Pursuant to the President's Social Contract, Malacanang said the government
endeavors to attain a broadly supported, just, and lasting peace that will
redress decades of neglect of the Moro and other peoples of Mindanao.
The President said the comprehensive peace process agenda in Mindanao is an
indispensable component of real and inclusive regional and national development
The government and the MILF entered into the Framework Agreement on the
Bangsamoro Oct 15, 2012, envisioned to pave the way for the peaceful resolution
of the armed struggle in Mindanao.
The President said the government acknowledges its commitment to exert all
efforts towards realizing the full implementation of the Framework Agreement.
"The Framework Agreement states that the Government and the MILF shall
intensify development efforts for rehabilitation, reconstruction, and
development in Mindanao, and institute programs to address the needs of MILF
combatants, internally displaced persons, and poverty-stricken communities
throughout Mindanao," he said.
The President designated Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras as the
chairperson of the task force.
He likewise designated as members of the task force Presidential Adviser on
the Peace Process Secretary Teresita Quintos-Deles, Social Welfare Secretary
Corazon Soliman, Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz, Health Secretary Enrique Ona;
Education Secretary Armin Luistro, Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala Jr.,
Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel Roxas, Budget Secretary Florencio
Abad, Presidential Management Staff Secretary Julia Abad;
Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Office Ricky
Carandang, Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio
Coloma Jr., Commission on Higher Education Chairperson Dr. Patricia B. Licuanan;
Technical Education and Skills Development Authority Chairperson Joel
Villanueva, Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda and president of the
Philippine Health Insurance Corporation.
The task force shall develop and implement programs and projects in response
to the health, education, and livelihood needs of the MILF priority
beneficiaries, internally displaced persons, and poverty-stricken communities
"For this purpose, the Sajahatra Bangsamoro Program shall be implemented as
the Government’s initial support for identified MILF combatants and families and
other affected persons; and communities after the signing of the Framework
Agreement," the President said.
The task force shall coordinate with the Transition Commission, created
pursuant to Executive Order No. 120 (s. 2012), in the development and
implementation of the foregoing programs and projects.
It may likewise consult with other relevant government instrumentalities
and/or non¬government organizations in carrying out the functions of the task
The President also directed the task force to develop and implement a
communications strategy on the Sajahatra Bangsamoro Program.
The task force shall monitor, in coordination with the Transition Commission,
the implementation of development projects and programs of the Sajahatra
Bangsamoro Program, and submit regular reports to the Office of the President.
The Task Force may create technical committees and designate members thereof,
and may engage the assistance of experts and professional advisors, subject to
government rules and regulations.
The member-agencies of the Task Force are hereby authorized to charge against
their current appropriations such amounts as may be necessary for the
implementation of this Order, subject to the usual government accounting arid
auditing rules and regulations, Aquino said.
Subsequent funding requirements shall be incorporated in the annual budget
proposals of the respective member-agencies through the General Appropriations
Additional funds as may be necessary for the implementation of the Order may
be allocated from the President’s Social Fund and Contingent Fund, subject to
the approval of the President.
The Order shall take effect immediately.