UNYPAD holds Dialogue Session with Children of Moro Rebels

The United Youth for Peace and Development (UNYPAD)-Western Mindanao Region brought together children of Moro Rebels belonging to the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) in a two-day dialogue on how to take part in the ongoing peace deal between the government of the Philippines (GPH) and the MILF @ Cecille Pension House, Barangay Tumaga Porcentro, Zamboanga City on January 27-29, 2017.

Participants mostly youth ranging from 18-35 years of age from provinces of Basilan, Zamboanga Sibugay, Zamboanga City and far flung island province of Sulu availed the opportunity of getting some knowledge and information regarding the current status of the stalled peace process, Philippines political issues on Duterte administration particularly the scheme to shift the present unitary form of government to federal system, the plight of Bangsamoro as displaced people in pre, era and post martial law to the present, and of course the root cause of problem that led to Moro uprising in the olden day.

UNYPAD-Western Mindanao Regional Coordinator Phix Samsaraji opened the program with the theme: “Dialogue Session Between MILF and MNLF Sons and Daughters” (Bridging the Relationship of the Moro, IP’s and Settlers in the Bangsamoro Region) accompanied by his presentation of what UNYPAD is all about, its task of empowering youth of present generation onward as well as  its program, goal, mission and vision as non-partisan organization in delivering its task/role in the ongoing peace process.

While the Cotabato-based UNYPAD-Central Mindanao Regional Project Officer Mursidin Husain discussed the overview and the root cause of Bangsamoro problem which he subsequently demanded for supplemental insights, opinions, and expectations @ the conclusion of the two days activity.

In his part, Guest of Honor and Resource Speaker, and member of technical working group (TWG), former Western Mindanao State University (WMSU) Professor Ali Aiyub explained the advantages and disadvantages should the government push through and succeeds in shifting the present form of government to federalism.

He said should federalism be established in the Bangsamoro Region it must be compliant with the provisions provided in the BBL and CAB in letter and spirit lest all times and efforts in seventeen years of peace negotiation would be put to waste.

Professor Aiyub also solicited some inputs from the participants on identifying issues and concerns regarding Moro youth non-participation or involvement in solving the Bangsamoro problem during the Focus Group Discussion (FGD) in the form of workshop.

Before concluding his lecture he made a statement for the youth to remember that the peace process does not end with the passage of BBL, it rather continue until all agreements stipulated in the CAB are implemented and subsequently will lead to the signing of the Exit Agreement.

Notably, on the part of the participants there were at least three names that rose to the occasion in interacting with the resource speaker Professor Aiyub.

They were Saudi Daranda, Sitti Kaushar Maring and Zhayma Abubakar who are identified as son of MILF and daughters of MNLF respectively. The rests were either intentionally opted to remain passive or too shy to participate in the activity.

Badruddin Mamindig closed the program at about 6PM.