Proposals for the crafting of a National Action Place on Youth from a number of youth groups of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) have swarmed in during a gathering for this purpose.
MARAWI CITY — Youth groups from across the BARMM in an official gathering came together to share proposals that would be included in the crafting of the National Action Plan on Youth, Peace and Security (NAPYPS). Youth leaders underscored their support to the National Government’s initiative to promote peace and the normalization process in Mindanao.
In a statement, 19-year-old Arafat Hamid, a member of the Saguisag A Ranaw youth organization, shared he and his fellow youth leaders are staunch peace advocates in the province because they do not want another siege to occur.
“Our main motivation in advocating for peace is our personal experience of the Marawi siege. The Marawi siege has become the biggest factor why we are advocating for peace,” Hamid recalled.
The Youth, Peace and Security (YPS) activity is part of the Duterte administration’s effort to encourage the active participation of the country’s vulnerable sectors: women, indigenous peoples, and the youth.
Aimed at formulating the NAPYPS, a series of community consultations recognizing the unique experience of the youth before, during and after the conflict were undertaken.
In 2018, the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) together with its partner agencies and peace partners crafted the Youth Peace Agenda based on the three regional consultations in Luzon, the Visayas, and Mindanao.
“Through the Social Healing and Peace-building (SHAPE) Program launched by OPAPP, the Government aims to address the key drivers of conflict by reducing and preventing economic, political, and social injustices,” says presidential peace adviser Carlito Galvez Jr.
“The NAPYPS, which is anchored on the United Nations Security Council Resolution No. 2550, will serve as the nation’s blueprint to ensure the protection and security of the youth, as well as their increased participation in the decision-making process and peacebuilding,” he says.
The exploitation of the youth remains prevalent particularly in the farthest, hard-to-reach communities of the country.
“Radical and extremist groups are creating a false narrative against the state and are encouraging young people, who are among the most vulnerable members of the society, to use firearms, fear, and violence to promote their twisted ideologies,” he says.
Secretary Galvez underscores the significance of consultations to ensure the success of the Government’s peace initiatives as well as the revving up normalization track and economic programs for development to strengthen peace in Mindanao.
“This is why our gathering today is both timely and crucial, as this will allow us to strategize and formulate interventions based on the realities you are experiencing on the ground.” (TRC/Headline PH)
Featured image: Youth groups are assured of a more pro-active role in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM). Photo taken June 2019. /Credit: OPAPP