From the Philippine Information Agency (Dec 22): Former MNLFs in Basilan get PAMANA livelihood support from gov’t
Former combatants of the Moro National Liberation Front
(MNLF) in Basilan received livelihood assistance from the government through
the Payapa at Masaganang PamayaNan (PAMANA) program of the Office of the
Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP).
Beneficiaries from selected MNLF communities in Basilan initially got farm/agricultural implements, post-harvest facilities, rubber and coconut seedlings, some livestock, and motorized “banca” (boat) as part of the PAMANA-MNLF project during the launching and ceremonial turnover at DAF-ARMM breeding station in Lamitan City, Basilan recently.
Autonomous RREgion in Muslim Mindanao Governor Mujiv Hataman and Basilan Governor Jum Akbar led the project launching and ceremonial turnover of PAMANA-MNLF phase II project. This was still part of the P600 million allotted for 2011-2013 PAMANA programs for MNLF communities, according to ARMM’s Department of Agriculture and Fisheries.
“Of the total P470 million worth of PAMANA projects, we are already on 50 percent of our disbursements and the biggest chunk of this is implemented in Sulu,” Hataman revealed, adding “about half of those communities originally listed in the PAMANA projects submitted for the 2013 budgeting were set aside during validation period, as more and more MNLF communities were given utmost priority.”
Hataman said the team validating the communities was very careful, as some of these were difficult to be identified, as “we are confused whether the community is still an MNLF community or those already of Abu Sayyafs. Thus, there was a need to do convergence with the military and other authorities to validate the target areas.”
“P431 million of the P470 million will fund community projects and P41 million is intended for operational expenses, training, and salary if we need personnel. And we need to complete the disbursements by the end of December this year,” Hataman added.
He also apologized to the former MNLF combatants for the delay in the implementation and release of farm implements and livelihood materials, as he cited bureaucratic and government procedures (which are necessary) as the reasons for the delay.
Meanwhile, Basilan Army Chief Brigade Commander Col. Rolando Joselito Bautista, who chairs the PAMANA Coordinating Team said that government has invested much resources already for peace in Basilan and hopes that funds has been translated into impact projects that would redound to the benefit of the communities.
Speaking on behalf of the beneficiaries, former MNLF commander Idris S. Sali said that they have been longing for this project since the time of former Basilan Governor Wahab Akbar when he was still alive.
“This project is the answer to our plea for government’s help to fulfill our dreams that we all live in peace and development,” he said.
Leaders of MNLF communities from barangays Guinanta, Danapa, Kuhun Lennuh, Upper Kuhun Lennuh, Magcawa, Kinukutan, Kailih, Bucalao, and Bohe Piang in Al-barka; Amaloy and Bohe Pahu in Ungkaya Pukan; Baungis, Matikang, Calayan, and Canibungan in Lantawan; Bubuan, Balanting, Lanawan and Babag in Tabuanlasa; Tausan, Lubukan, Mananggal, Baluk-Baluk, Dasalan and Sangbay Small in Hadji Muhtamad; Puno Mahadje and Upper Mahayahay in Maluso; Parangbasak in Lamitan; Candiid in Moh. Ajul; Matias (Tumajubong) and Ettub-Ettub in Sumisip; Upper Sinangkapan and Semut in Akbar; and Bohe Baca in Tipo-Tipo received the projects for and on behalf of the community.
PAMANA is the government’s peace and development framework to respond and strengthen peace building, reconstruction and development in conflict affected areas (CAAs) that complement the government's peace negotiation efforts. It aims to: (a) reduce poverty and vulnerability in conflict-affected areas; (b) improve governance; and (c) empower communities and strengthen their capacity to address issues of conflict and peace.
Mr. Shinichi Masuda, head of the JICA Cotabato Project Office, handed over the project documents to BTC commissioners Timway Melanio Ulama and Froilyn Mendoza.
Undertaken over a seven-month period this year, the registration of Bangsamoro professionals was made through the Human Resource Development (HRD) component of the CCDP-B or “Comprehensive Capacity Development Project for the Bangsamoro”, a mutual endeavor of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the BTC.
The “mapping“ was designed to identify the available potential human resources of the Bangsamoro and equip them with essential knowledge.
A total of 5152 registered with Human Resource Mapping Implementation Unit (HRMIU) either online or manual submission. The said unit created a webpage for those who registered using the internet.
The number of those who registered was way below expectations but “it’s a very good start in further determining the actual strength of Bangsamoro professionals,” said Engr. Muhajirin Ali of the BTC Socio-Economic Unit which supervised the project.
The database will be used in policy formulation and planning activities.