LGUs, BARMM charting common security, development thrusts

John Unson - Philstar.com
LGUs, BARMM charting common security, development thrusts
The series of Bangsamoro governance dialogues started early this week in Basilan, hosted by Gov. Jim Salliman.
Philstar.com / John Unson

COTABATO CITY, Philippines — Local executives are in favor of aligning their development initiatives with those of the potential funder Bangsamoro government to boost regional economy and security.

Municipal and provincial officials in Basilan, in Maguindanao and in Lanao del Sur, in fact, assured of their support in pushing forward the peace and development initiatives of the Bangsamoro region during dialogues this week with regional officials.

Organizers said the brainstorming sessions among local officials and representatives from different Bangsamoro ministries were essential to efforts for the autonomous region to bounce back from decades of underdevelopment.

Bangsamoro Local Government Minister Naguib Sinarimbo told reporters Saturday the engagements week were prelude to a “summit proper” on July 23 where participants are to chart security, social welfare, education and other pro-people programs that stakeholders can together push forward as a community.

“The summit proper will enable us to converge together the programs of the region and those of the local government units so that there would be a common development thrust for all to pursue,” Sinarimbo said.

The now 27-month Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, which replaced the 29-year Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao in 2019, covers the provinces of Maguindanao, Lanao del Sur, Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi and the cities of Marawi, Lamitan and Cotabato.

The pioneering governance concept of the Ministry of the Interior and Local Government-BARMM and the office of the region’s chief minister, Ahod Ebrahim, was never envisioned by officials of the now defunct ARMM.

Sinarimbo, also BARMM’s spokesperson, said a strong cooperation on peace and development initiatives among mayors, provincial governors and regional ministries can hasten the socio-economic growth of the region.

“We are thankful to Basilan Gov.  Jim Salliman and his constituent-municipal officials for hosting our dialogue with them this week,”Sinarimbo said.

Salliman has been vocal in endorsing the peace programs of the BARMM government.

The event in Basilan was followed by separate pre-summit dialogues among local executives from Lanao del Sur and Maguindanao provinces, both in mainland Mindanao.   

No fewer than 40 local officials from Lanao del Sur, led by Gov. Mamintal Adiong, Jr., participated in the pre-summit in Iligan City also this week.

Adiong, a supporter of the peace process between Malacañang and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, said he and his constituent-mayors have no problem with aligning their humanitarian, peace and development initiatives with those of the BARMM government.

“We are aware that a fusion of these development initiatives will bring in lasting peace and prosperity in Lanao del Sur,” Adiong said.

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