BARMM earmarks P100 million for community, peace-building programs
Bangsamoro Local Government Minister Naguib Sinarimbo presided over Friday’s council of advisers to the regional police. Unson
BARMM earmarks P100 million for community, peace-building programs
John Unson ( - December 14, 2019 - 4:30pm

COTABATO CITY, Philippines — The Bangsamoro local government ministry has earmarked a total of P100 million for 2020 community services and peace-building programs of the region’s cross-section police regional advisory council.

Lawyer Naguib Sinarimbo, local government minister of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, said Saturday his office has P60 million for development initiatives next year of the BARMM police and its cross-section Regional Advisory Council, or RAC.

The RAC, comprised of representatives from the local communities, including the region’s media community, helps the Police Regional Office-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region (PRO-BAR) on advisory capacity.

The PRO-BAR covers Maguindanao and Lanao del Sur, which are both in mainland Mindanao, the island provinces of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi and 63 barangays in North Cotabato.

Sinarimbo said the Ministry of the Interior and Local Government-BARMM also allocated P40 million for programs meant to hasten the return to mainstream society of members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, or BIFF.

The group is not covered by the ceasefire accord between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, whose leader, Hadji Ahod Ebrahim, is now chief minister of BARMM.

The creation of BARMM that replaced early this year the 29-year-old Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao was an offshoot of 22 years of peace talks between the government and the MILF.

Sinarimbo was elected on Friday as new chairperson of the RAC of the regional police, a post left vacant with the resignation of lawyer Laisa Masuhud-Alamia, former executive secretary of the defunct ARMM and now minority floor leader of the Bangsamoro parliament.

He said the MILG-BARMM now has a program dubbed Tulong ng Gobyernong Nagmamalasakit, or TUGON, that shall provide humanitarian interventions needed in the reintroduction to the local communities of reforming former BIFF members.

More than 50 members of the BIFF from the adjoining North Cotabato and Maguindanao provinces surrendered in batches to units of the Army’s 6th Infantry Division in the past 24 months.

Sinarimbo said it is important to provide relief, rehabilitation and livelihood support to former BIFF members for them to have sources of income as they reform for good.

Sinarimbo, who presided over on Friday the RAC meeting in his office in Cotabato City, said he is also open to the inclusion in the advisory council of representatives from the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, from the Bureau of Fire Protection and from the 6th ID to maximize cooperation among security sectors in support of the Mindanao peace process.

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