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Galvez: Amnesty among FVR’s peace legacies

Jose Rodel Clapano - The Philippine Star
Galvez: Amnesty among FVRâs peace legacies
Former Philippine president Fidel Ramos (C) gives a salute during the change of command ceremony at Camp Aguinaldo in Manila on October 26, 2017. Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte leads the military change of command from outgoing chief of staff General Eduardo Ano to new head Lieutenant General Rey Lenonardo Guerrero.
AFP / Noel Celis

MANILA, Philippines — Officials pursuing peace with rebels lauded the late president Fidel Ramos’ initiatives for reconciliation and unity.

Presidential adviser for peace, reconciliation and unity Carlito Galvez Jr. yesterday said among the peace legacies of Ramos was signing Proclamation No. 723, which granted amnesty to military officers who participated in the 1989 coup attempt.

Galvez said he was one of the beneficiaries of that act by Ramos in 1996.

“I will forever be grateful to FVR because he gave me and my fellow officers a second chance in life. It was through that amnesty proclamation that I was able to revive my military service and go on to become the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ chief-of-staff,” he said.

OPAPRU pushes amnesty commission

Galvez said this is the reason why his office or OPAPRU has been pushing for the formal establishment of the National Amnesty Commission (NAC), which was created by virtue of Executive Order 125 issued by former president Rodrigo Duterte in February 2021.

Relative to EO 125, Duterte also released Presidential Proclamation Nos. 1090, 1091, 1092 and 1093 which granted amnesty to members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), Rebolusyonaryong Partidong Manggagawa ng Pilipinas/Revolutionary Proletarian Army/Alex Boncayao Brigade - Tabara Paduano Group or KAPATIRAN, and the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF), respectively, who committed crimes during the course of their armed struggle.

The House of Representatives’ committees on justice, and national defense and security passed in March 2021 House Resolutions Nos. 12, 13, 14 and 15 which concurred with Presidential Proclamations Nos. 1090 to 1093.

For its part, the Senate adopted House Resolutions Nos. 12, 13, 14 but withheld its concurrence to Proclamation 1093, which grants amnesty to members of the CPP-NPA-NDF.

The seven-member NAC will be composed of a chairperson, two regular members, and four ex-officio members.

The secretaries of national defense, of justice, and of the interior and local government, as well as the peace adviser, shall serve as ex-officio members of the body.

“With the creation of the NAC, we hope to provide former rebels with an opportunity to fully reintegrate themselves into mainstream society as peaceful, productive and law-abiding individuals,” Galvez said.

He recalled that it was under Ramos’ term when the government launched a nationwide consultation process aimed at developing a strategy to engage various rebel groups in the country.

FIDEL RAMOS

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