The Armed Forces of the Philippines Central Command described the creation of a 5-year Provincial Peace, Integration and Development Unit, which was established by the provincial government, 303rd Infantry Brigade, and the Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office, to help conflict-affected communities in the province, as a “very good model” of the AFP “Bayanihan” campaign.
Navy Vice Admiral Edgar Abogado, AFP Central Command chief, in a dialog with 303rd IB troopers on Saturday in Murcia, Negros Occidental, said the main objective of the AFP’s Internal Peace and Security Plan is to “win the peace”, through a people-centered security strategy that is founded on broad-based consultations and engagements with key stakeholders.
Abogado also lauded the efforts of the Philippine Army and PNP in Negros Occidental for the formation of the Multi-Sectoral Action Group in La Castellana, whose members are now helping survivors and families of the ambush victims in coping up with trauma.
Eight civilians and a policeman died, and 12 others were injured in an ambush claimed by the New People’s Army in Brgy. Puso, La Castellana, Jan. 27.
Col. Oscar Lactao, 303rd IB commander, said the creation of PIDU last year aims to sustain its peace building and development efforts, crucial to the resolution of more than 40 years of armed conflict in Negros Occidental.
Lactao said it will not only address security and livelihood needs, but will cause healing and reconciliation towards sustainable peace in Negros Occidental.*GPB