Advocates of the Yes for Peace–Bayanihan para sa Kapayapaan, Kaunlaran at Kasaganahan, a nationwide campaign to get the Filipino people involved and to actively participate in the comprehensive peace process, hailed incoming Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza for vowing transparency in the peace negotiations with the National Democratic Front (NDF) and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).
Ernesto Angeles Alcanzare, lead organizer of the peace movement, said Dureza earlier said that, "usually, when you talk behind closed doors, you don’t announce what happened. Now, it has to be very transparent. We will keep the public abreast, always.”
Alcanzare said they are grateful because “Secretary Dureza’s vow is a complete turn-around from the unmovable stand of his predecessor of keeping the peace negotiations secret and exclusive despite President Aquino's commitment to make it transparent and participative. We now have very fertile ground for the serious consideration of peace negotiators to the calls of the 12,290,847 Filipinos.”
A report submitted by Alcanzare and Lawyer Domingo B. Alidon, president of the Department of Education National Employees’ Union (DepEd NEU) to Education Secretary Armin A. Luistro and top DepEd officials last week shows that based on summaries forwarded thru email earlier this year, 98.62 percent of Yes for Peace KaBayanihans agree that armed conflicts between the government and armed groups must stop; 98.22 percent agree that peace talks should be held anywhere here in the Philippines instead of abroad; and 99.34 percent agree that all Filipinos must get involved and participate in working for peace, progress and prosperity.
To follow through Dureza’s commitment to ensure transparency in the peace negotiations, Alcanzare suggested in a recent online open letter to Professor Jose Maria Sison, founding chairman of the CPP and adviser of the NDF, “you may want to live-stream and post in real-time the formal proceedings of the peace talks and/or joint statements to openly show the Filipino people that, indeed, you represent our interests and not only your own.”
It can be recalled that during the exhaustive deliberations on the draft Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) submitted by Malacanang for congressional review and approval, Yes for Peace adviser and 1-BAP party list Representative Silvestre H. Bello III, incoming Labor Secretary and chief negotiator, took a firm principled stand: “It must pass through the tests of constitutionality and acceptability. Ideally, the Filipino people should get involved and participate in the process."
The 19,000-strong DepEd NEU actively supports Yes for Peace and provides secretariat support and facilities for its education and advocacy phase which was primarily implemented as an unfunded project through the Bayanihan or collective involvement and participation of postal workers, private and public school teachers, the scouting movement and other government and non-government organizations.
Aside from PHLPOst and DepEd, the government agencies behind Yes for Peace are the Philippine Information Agency (PIA), the Philippine News Agency (PNA), the National Printing Office (NPO), Philippine Broadcast System (PBS) and Radio Television Malacanang (RTVM) that provided media support to chronicle campaign highlights as far back as the administration of President Fidel V. Ramos.