PASIG CITY, September 19, 2018 – Presidential Peace Adviser Jesus G. Dureza today emphasized the need for peace and development programs to benefit not just a few people but the entire community.
“It is very important that while implementing these projects, there is transparency and inclusivity, meaning we should not only touch those who know us personally, or those who support us politically,” he said.
Dureza made the statement at the signing today of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) and selected Local Government Units (LGU) to formally launch the Community Peace Dividends Fund (CPDF) Program in this city.
The CPDF is a peace and development program of OPAPP that aims to develop, monitor, and implement conflict-sensitive and peace-promoting livelihood projects.
It is supported by the Spanish Government through the Agencia Española Cooperación Internacional para el Desarollo (AECID).
Dureza signed the MOU on behalf of OPAPP, with Tadian, Mountain Province Mayor Anthony Wooden, Leon B. Postigo, Zamboanga del Norte Mayor Hermogenes Cordova, Cabanglasan, Bukidnon Mayor Reynante Inocando, and Esperanza, Agusan del Sur Sangguniang Bayan Member Nathaniel Cabactulan.
H.E. Amaya Fuentes-Milani, Chargé d’Affaires, Ad interim and Deputy Head of Mission of the Embassy of Spain to the Philippines, and AECID Coordinator General Juan Pita witnessed the signing of the MOU.
“Spain and AECID’s support to this initiative of the Government to implement livelihood projects that are conflict-sensitive and peace-promoting in fragile communities that have gone through conflict, or still suffering from issues of unpeace, is greatly appreciated” Secretary Dureza said.
“Hopefully, this (program) will provide a template, a model we can apply to other areas,” he added.
The program follows the following three contexts: (a) areas under peace agreement implementation or post-conflict situation where the whole bureaucracy of government is addressing the peace and development concerns in these areas; (b) conflict-affected areas where parallel development can be initiated while the peace negotiations are ongoing; and (c) in areas where indigenous peoples are predominant.
The selected areas are identified based on a set of criteria approved by the Project Steering Committee and validated by the Conflict and Vulnerability Index formulated by OPAPP.
The provincial government officials, the security sector, and civil society organizations chose the final municipalities and barangays during the provincial orientation and consultations conducted by the agency.
Fuentes-Milani expressed her optimism that the program “will benefit the communities and will bring together women and men, indigenous groups, elders and youth, to discuss about their priorities and facilitate the path towards a peaceful coexistence.“
“The Government of Spain values the partnership with OPAPP and will remain committed to supporting peace and development in the Philippines as our key priorities,” she said. ###