From the Sun Star-Zamboanga (Oct 23): DepEd, military team up to enhance youth education
THE Department of Education (DepEd) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), through the Joint Task Force Sulu (JTFS), teamed up as part of the continuing education enhancement program for the youth in areas influenced by recruitment and indoctrination of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG).
The two agencies distributed volumes of books, such as Math and Science kits, to 26 schools in Sulu in a week-long operation that started on Saturday, October 22.
The distribution of books started just after DepEd officials, led by Dr. Rhaiyan Pulalan, met with JTFS Commander Arnel Dela Vega where they discussed literacy enhancement plans and measures to be undertaken in Sulu.
“Education is our most effective weapon against poverty, criminality and terrorism. An educated individual will not easily fall prey to the deception and manipulation of criminal elements,” Dela Vega said, citing the joint project with DepEd is timely.
It can be recalled that Pauji Asgari, the latest arrested ASG member, revealed that he and most ASG members who never went to school or have limited education were not aware that they are committing crimes due to lack of appropriate knowledge and indoctrination of their leaders.
The military troops arrested Asgari around 5 a.m. Tuesday, October 18, in Talipao, Sulu.
Recovered from his possession were M16 Armalite rifle, ammunition, electric cords, combat pack, mobile phone, hammock, motorcycle and a Marine Battle Dress Attire.
Dela Vega said the joint project is part of the inter-agency and stakeholder collaborative efforts to deliver basic services and address the root causes of insurgency and criminality in Sulu.
He added several National Government agencies visited Sulu in the past weeks and conducted planning activities to address the problem in the province.