RRUC-ARMM, MILFs Taskforce, and CSOs Facilitate Settlement of land conflict in Maguindanao

Cotabato City -- Regional Reconciliation and Unification Commission of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (RRUC-ARMM), Taskforce Conflict Resolution and Management of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (TFCRM), and the Local Government Units of Datu Blah Sinsuat, and North Upi together with Civil Society Organizations in Maguindanao brought on Sunday warring Maguindanaon and Teduray clans to a negotiating table here to end their dispute that had claimed numerous lives and injuries to some members of the warring clans. 

RRUC – ARMM Chairman Romeo K. Sema, successfully mediated and settled the “rido” (family feud) involving the families of Mama, Umping and Martin, all residents of Barangay Matuber, Datu Blah Sinsuat, Maguindanao.

Chairman Sema, concurrent head of the ARMM Coordinating Mechanism for Rido Settlement (ACMRS), said the clan war had claimed at least 4 lives, and injured 2 family members in firefights.

Abdulbasit R. Benito, Executive Director of RRUC-ARMM said that conflicting parties agreed to end their feud by amicable settlement where relatives of the victims received “Diaht”. 

Diaht is a monetary provision by a killer or the killer's clan to the family of a person who has been killed in intended for the cleansing of the heart.

The conflict was brought about by a land dispute where family of Umping claimed the parcel of land in Barangay Matuber that was sold to the family of Mama Amir. The conflict had worsened when 2 relatives of Mama Amir were slain. Before the said killings, 3 family members of Umping were arrested and detained related to the dispute.   

In succeeding weeks, the feud between the two (2) families escalates when 2 members of Martin family, a Teduray were killed in a separate clash.  

In a peace agreement signed by both parties, the families agreed to end the killings, including affidavit of desistance to be filed by Mama Kamir to release the three members of Umping from jail. It was also agreed to conduct resurvey of the 6 hectares parcel of the disputed land, and the excess of that will be distributed to the Umping family. 

TFCRM, Chairman Gordon Shayfullah Khan committed to secure peace and stability in the area. On part of the MILF, I guaranteed that Mama Amir family will not violate this agreement, Gordon said. 

The LGUs of Datu Blah, and North Upi will facilitate the safe return of families displaced by the said conflict. To the celebrate successful settlement of dispute, a thanksgiving kanduli will be held in the community upon the return of the displaced persons due to conflict. 

The peaceful resolution of this conflict has been achieved through the concerted efforts of the LGU of DBS and North Upi, Office of the Southern Cultural Communities (OSCC-ARMM), Task Force Conflict Resolution and Management of the MILF (TFCRM), local Civil Society Organizations (CSO), the Cohesion, Resilience, and Expansive Engagement for Peace in the Philippines (CARE for Peace) and The Asia Foundation.