PASIG CITY (3 NOVEMBER 2020)— The Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) has welcomed the results of a recently published study, which listed the Philippines as among the top 50 safest countries in the world in 2019.

Presidential Peace Adviser Carlito G. Galvez, Jr. noted that peace is a shared responsibility among all stakeholders, and that the current gains in peace and security are due to the collective efforts of the government and the public.

“We are glad to be recognized as among the safest countries in the world. Thanks to our law enforcers, peace workers, and everyone who has made a commitment to peace, we are moving forward as a peaceful, progressive and resilient nation,” Galvez said.

The 2020 Global Law and Order report by global analytics firm Gallup, was based on interviews of around 175,000 respondents, across 144 countries and areas in 2019.

Respondents were asked the following questions:

  • In the city or area where you live, do you have confidence in the local police force?
  • Do you feel safe walking alone at night in the city or area where you live?
  • Within the last 12 months, have you had money or property stolen from you or another household member?
  • Within the past 12 months, have you been assaulted or mugged?

The Philippines registered a global index of 84, similar to Australia, New Zealand, Poland and Serbia.

Meanwhile, Singapore and Turkmenistan ranked first and second, respectively, both gaining a global index of 97.

Personal safety, collective peace

OPAPP, as the government agency mandated to oversee and manage all peace tables across the country, has played a key role in moving forward the comprehensive Philippine peace process over the years.

The agency facilitated the decommissioning of both the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), and the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) rejectionist group Rebolusyonaryong Partidong Manggagawa ng PIlipinas/ Revolutionary Proletarian Army/ Alex Boncayao Brigade- Tabara Paduano Group (RPM-P/ RPA/ ABB-TPG) in September 2019.

Moreover, the implementation of the Whole-of-Nation Approach to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (ELCAC) under Executive Order no. 70 has paved the way for the successful conduct of localized peace engagements (LPE) across the country.

As a result, hundreds of former rebels (FRs) across the country have returned to the folds of the law and are now living as peaceful and productive citizens.

The agency also led aggressive information and education campaigns particularly among vulnerable sectors such as education, agriculture, labor, security, and Indigenous Peoples (IPs), to counter the communist group’s recruitment and propaganda.

“All these efforts aim to promote reconciliation, mutual understanding and solidarity among the people. By building a culture of peace, we help empower people and communities to resist violence and become agents of peaceful transformation,” the peace adviser said.

Galvez, a former chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), also expressed his gratitude to the uniformed personnel for their major contribution in preserving  peace and order in the country.

“Our brave police and military personnel are not only keeping our streets safe, but also function as our first responders in times of calamities, disasters and accidents. We thank and salute them for all their commitment and hard work,” Galvez said. ###