barmm

Restrictions waived for Moro fighters aspiring to become cops, soldiers

July 16, 2019

Presidential Peace Adviser Carlito Galvez, Jr. said that MILF members will be given priority in the hiring process for security forces in the newly-created Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).   He particularly cited the Police Regional Office-BARMM, 6th Infantry Division (ID) based in Maguindanao, 1st ID based in Zamboanga del Sur and 11th  ID based in Sulu would give priority in the hiring process to qualified Moro combatants, including members of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF).   “We will write the AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) and the PNP (Philippine National Police) that qualified applicants coming from MILF and MNLF communities be given preference as part of community policing and the normalization process,” Galvez, head of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP), told MindaNews in a text message.   Galvez, BARMM interim Chief Minister Ahod Ebrahim and Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año had discussed the matter of foregoing some requirements for Moro combatants to become members of government forces.   In terms of the waived educational attainment, undergraduate Moro combatants hired as state troopers should finish a degree within 15 years of service, Galvez said.   “This is not an integration (of Moro combatants into government ranks) but a normal process. Part of the (peace) agreement allows the waiving of some requirements to accommodate more qualified applicants,” Ebrahim said in a text message in Filipino.   Ebrahim, popularly known as MILF chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim, said no quota was discussed since it will all depend on the individual MILF member whether or not he or she will join the police or the army.   The government and the MILF signed the final Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) in 2014 after four decades of conflict that left dead over 120,000 people, including civilians.   The CAB’s major component is the creation of a new Bangsamoro region, which was realized with the ratification early this year of Republic Act 11054 or Organic Law for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, popularly called the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL).   The BARMM replaced the 29-year-old Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.   Under the BOL, the age, height, and educational requirements of MILF combatants may be waived by the National Police Commission, and that they should apply within five years from the ratification of the BOL, OPAPP said in a statement.   The MILF is a splinter of the MNLF, which signed a separate final peace agreement with the government in 1996.   Under the CAB’s Annex on Normalization, Galvez said that at least 1,600 PNP members will be trained as part of the Joint Peace Security Teams (JPST).   The JPST members will help secure communities during the camp transformation and the decommissioning of 12,000 or 30 percent of MILF combatants this year.   Based on the normalization timeline, 35 percent of the combatants will be decommissioned by next year. The rest will undergo decommissioning from 2021 to 2022. This process will be completed before the signing of an exit agreement as stipulated in the CAB.   The pilot decommissioning of the Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Forces, the MILF's armed wing, happened in 2015 during the term of former President Benigno Aquino III, as a result of the signing of the CAB the previous year.

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NAPC to Help Reduce Poverty Incidence in BARMM Inbox

July 9, 2019

MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur  -The National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC) vowed to help the Bangsamoro Government reduce poverty incidence in the region.   NAPC Secretary Noel Felongco said they will gather local chief executives, planning officers, and BARMM ministers to orient them on the Commission’s poverty alleviation projects. NAPC will roll-out a five-year development plan (2019-2023) dubbed the Sambayanihan Serbisyong Sambayanan to deliver basic social services prioritizing the poorest communities. It aims to help attain the administration’s poverty reduction target and contribute to the realization of the AmBisyon Natin 2040. Felongco said the national government  seeks “to accelerate the country’s economic engine and reduce overall poverty incidence from 21 percent in 2015 to 14 percent by 2023.” Communities in the Bangsamoro autonomous region are among the NAPC’s Sambayanihan priority areas. “We will ensure that all basic needs are accessible in BARMM,” he added. Derived from the unifying themes of the calls of the basic sectors at the National Anti-Poverty Sectoral Summit in 2016, the ten basic needs of Filipinos are food and land reform, water, shelter, work, health, education, social protection, healthy environment, peace, and participation.   The agency will also prioritize five key issues in the region such as peace and order, increasing inflation rate related to agriculture and fisheries, lack of inter-agency collaboration, inadequate community participation, and climate change. “Majority of the population in BARMM are farmers and fishermen. If we can improve agriculture and fisheries, we can reduce poverty incidence,” Abdullah Cusain, BARMM assistant executive secretary said. In 2018, BARMM’s gross regional domestic product (GRDP) posted 7.2 percent growth rate in which the sectors of agriculture, hunting, forestry, and fishing remained the largest share in the region’s total economic performance

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JICA Presents CCDP Final Report for Bangsamoro

July 9, 2019

MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur -The Japan International Cooperation Agency met with the key officials of the BARMM on Thursday, July 4, to present its final report on the Comprehensive Capacity Development Project (CCDP) for the Bangsamoro.   The CCDP is a JICA project implemented from July 2013 – July 2019. It sought to help improve the system and institution of the new autonomous Bangsamoro region and upgrade its human resources capacity. It also aimed to reduce the poverty rate in the region, especially in the conflict-affected areas.   The CCDP was composed of three components: governance, public service delivery, and community development, and economic enhancement.   One of its projects was the Revenue Enhancement Assistance for LGUs (REAL) in ARMM which helped improve the revenue generation in the region.   “We assure you that your sacrifices and the taxpayers’ money will not be put into waste, it will enhance many of the programs that we tend to (implement),” Minister Naguib Sinarimbo of the local government ministry told the JICA officials.   Among the BARMM officials who attended the meeting were Executive Secretary Esmael Pasigan, Assistant Executive Secretary Abdullah Cusain, Cabinet Secretary Asnin Pendatun, and others. 

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LGU Piagapo Develops Curriculum for Madrasah Education

July 8, 2019

The local government of Piagapo has developed a centralized curriculum for Arabic schools (Madrasah) within the municipality to ensure that students receive a coherent learning experience that contributes towards their spiritual, educational, social, and psychological learning and development.   For the first time in the history of Arabic education in the province, the said curriculum will be introduced to teachers and students this month after Piagapo former mayor now vice mayor Engr. Ali Sumandar turned over the said documents to different Madrasah heads in a small ceremony held on July 3 at the municipal hall.   The unified curriculum is designed for Kinder (Tahderia), Grade (Ibtida), High School (Motawasit), High School (Thanawi), and College (Kolya) students which was crafted by Muslim religious scholars in close coordination with the local government through its office on Islamic Affairs headed by Cosain Datumaas and Aleem Mostafa Panganting, Focal Person and Piagapo’s Deputy Mayor for Islamic Affairs, respectively.   The curriculum was developed to also help combat the spread of religious extremism and radicalism in the country.

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Son of ex-Maguindanao gov, 4 others Killed in Military Checkpoint

July 8, 2019

Western Mindanao Command chief Lt. Gen. Cirilito Sobejana said what happened at around 8:45 p.m. Friday was an encounter between troops manning a checkpoint and suspected gunmen inside a gray Nissan Patrol car. Relatives confirmed that one of the slain men was Datu Hasheem Matalam, son of former Maguindanao Governor and long-time Pagalungan town mayor Norodin Matalam, and a resident of Barangay Layug. Also killed were Buton Bacocol, a resident of Matina, Pangi, Davao City. Their bodies were immediately claimed by their relatives. One of the three unidentified victims was later identified as Abdullah Mamalumpong, a fugitive from the provincial jail in Amaas, North Cotabato. Recovered from the scene are high-powered firearms consisting of an M-16 riffle, two M-653, one 1911 pistol, one riffle grenade, one hand grenade, three sachets of suspected shabu paraphernalia, cellphones and 15,000 pesos cash. Brig. Gen. Alfredo Rosario, chief of the 602nd Infantry Brigade covering Maguindanao and North Cotabato, said reports reaching them indicate the men inside the car did not stop at the checkpoint but fired their guns at the troops instead. “The troops manning the checkpoint tried to stop them for inspection but they opened fire first which led our men to fire back”, Rosario said in a telephone interview. Rosario added that his men, especially the troops under 7th Infantry Battalion, are on red alert status  because of the clashes the whole day on Friday from the factions of the  Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) engaged in a rido (clan war). “We will sustain our effort against the lawless groups, campaign on loose firearms and rido settlement,” Sobejana said.

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New Maguindanao Gov Holds Office in Shariff Aguak capitol

July 4, 2019

New Maguindanao Gov. Bai Mariam Sangki-Mangudadatu delivered her inaugural address and State of the Province Address at the gymnasium inside the capitol compound here Tuesday morning, marking the return of the seat of power in this town after almost a decade.   Armored tanks and heavily-armed military and police officers were deployed strategically along the highway and inside the provincial capitol compound, which serves as the headquarters of the 601st Infantry Brigade following the infamous 2009 Ampatuan massacre that killed 58 people, including 32 media workers.   Sangki-Mangudadatu, the first elected female governor who touted herself as the Agila ng Maguindanao (Eagle of Maguindanao), pledged to lead Maguindanao to new heights during her inaugural address at the jampacked gymnasium.   “We will work to restore Maganoy to its old glory,” she told the crowd in Filipino.   Maganoy, the old name of Shariff Aguak, used to be a bustling locality in the then undivided Cotabato empire.   During the campaign period, Sangki-Mangudadatu promised to return the provincial seat of power to Shariff Aguak, which, according to her, is the “rightful” capitol site.   “Walang duda ang bayang to ang kinikilala ng batas na syang provincial capital (There is no doubt the law recognizes this town as the provincial capital,” Sangki-Mangudadatu said in a speech that lasted for about an hour.   The late three-term governor Andal Ampatuan Sr. built here the P218-million capitol, the only one in the country with a jacuzzi whirlpool bath at the governor’s wing.. The capitol is a few hundred meters away from what used to be his palatial house.   Ampatuan Sr., the alleged mastermind in the Ampatuan massacre, so-called because it happened in Ampatuan town, died while in detention in 2015 due to a lingering illness.   He abandoned the old provincial capitol in Nuling, Sultan Kudarat town months after he became the governor in 2001 following an alleged ambush of his convoy.   His immediate predecessors --- Zacaria Candao (1986–1992; 1995–2001) and Norodin Matalam (1992–1995) --- held office at the provincial capitol in Sultan Kudarat town.   The successor of Ampatuan Sr., outgoing three-term governor Esmael “Toto” Mangudadatu, did not hold office in Shariff Aguak and ruled the province in his hometown Buluan after assuming power in 2010 due to security reasons.   Esmael’s wife and several female family members, who filed the certificate of candidacy for governor on his behalf, were among the victims of the massacre.   Esmael established a “satellite office” in Buluan town after he assumed power and in 2016, started constructing there a P500-million new capitol in a 12-hectare property that President Duterte unveiled only last February.   Sangki-Mangudadatu, whose husband Suharto Mangudadatu is the come-backing governor of neighboring Sultan Kudarat province, said the provincial capitol in Buluan, which was patterned after the US capitol, would be transformed into a hospital.   Suharto, who previously served as governor and congressional representative of Sultan Kudarat province, and Esmael are cousins.   Sangki-Mangudadatu, formerly the mayor of Datu Abdullah Sangki town for two terms, defeated Freddie Mangudadatu, younger brother of Esmael, who won the province’s second congressional district race.   A part of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, Maguindanao, which is composed of 36 towns, is a known bailiwick of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and one of the country’s poorest provinces due to the decades-long Moro rebellion.   The interior of the capitol building appeared dilapidated due to lack of maintenance and needs rehabilitation.

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