Gov't assures ongoing peace talks with RPA-ABB in Panay, Negros
February 3, 2010 11:30 pm
ILOILO CITY, Feb. 3 – Despite the forthcoming May elections, the national government continues its efforts in seeking peace with the leftist movement and its leaders in Panay and Negros islands.
This was assured by Annabelle Abaya, newly installed Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process while in this city to lead a Peace Partners’ Forum for stakeholders, mostly members of the Rebolusyonaryong Partido ng Manggagawa-Philippinas (RPMP) and the Revolutionary Proletarian Army/Alex Boncayao Brigade (RPA/ABB).
However, Abaya pointed out that the government is talking to only one group that represents both organizations that signed a peace accord on December 6, 2000 in the municipality of Don Salvador Benedicto in Negro Occidental.
The RPA/ABB organization split up in 2001 into two groups headed by Stephen Paduano known as Luwalhati Carapale and his commander Ramil Farol in Panay. The other group under Nilo de la Cruz and has Hugo Capilastique and Rustico Cutanda in Panay.
Abaya said they are inviting all peace partners to avail of peace projects as the government is willing to give financial assistance to these projects mostly implemented in the barangays with reported presence of their members.
Abaya said the project proposals should be received by the Office of Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process on or before February 19, 2010 and the project should be implemented within eight months but not beyond November 2010.
Priority is given to projects located in or covered in areas affected by the ongoing armed conflict with the CPP-NPA-NDF and the MILF and areas where the peace agreements are implemented with the CPLA, MNLF, RPMP/RPA/ABB and the Rebolusyonaryong Partido ng Manggagawa Mindanao (RPM-M).
On the other hand, Abaya said there is a need for third party complainant to file charges against any member of the RPA/ABB who demands “permit to campaign fees” from any political candidate this coming election. The demand shall be treated as a common crime with corresponding penalties, she added. (PNA) LAP/LCPendon/vlo