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Peace adviser wants ex-MILF rebels empowered to become agents of peace and development

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POLITIKO - The bible of Philippine Politics

By Prince Golez

The Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process is poised to transform former combatants of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) into agents of peace and development.

This will be the key in the smooth implementation ofthe Normalization track of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro, said Presidential Peace Adviser Carlito G. Galvez Jr. Friday.

Galvez earlier participated in a multi-sectoral policy dialogue attended by representatives from the academe, civil society, and religious sector at the Ateneo de Davao University in Davao City.

“We need to change the mindset of the MILF leaders. Or else, we will go nowhere,” the chief peace adviser said, adding that mentoring former rebels is one of the strategies being employed under the normalization phase.

Galvez identified “ideology” and “social conditions” as primary drivers of conflict in communities.

“These factors are mutually reinforcing,” Galvez said as he cited the Maute group, who aligns themselves with the Islamic State, as an example of an ideology-driven organization.

“If we don’t change the mindset of these fighters, we won’t have sustainable change and development. We can’t have another Mamasapano,” he concluded.

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