OPAPP seeks more collaboration with civil society

CIVIL society organizations’ (CSOs) support for the peace process is very important, especially in expanding the discourse on the peace negotiations and in bringing about badly-needed development in conflict-affected areas, which is why the Aquino administration is keen on strengthening its collaboration with CSOs.

Undersecretary Luisito Montalbo of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process admitted that the OPAPP cannot do it all alone but need the partnership and collaboration of CSOs in bringing about peace and development in conflict-affected areas.

Montalbo said that the government’s development track Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan (Peaceful and Progressive Community), or PAMANA, which complements the peace negotiations, need the support of the CSOs.

PAMANA has three pillars—building foundations for peace; establishing resilient communities; and addressing regional development.

“It is a work-in-progress, as OPAPP is still completing the roadmap for submission to President Aquino, finalizing institutional partnerships, and establishing peace and development communities,” he said in a statement.

Montalbo also batted for the holding of regular meetings with CSOs in order to provide mechanisms for starting and sustaining partnerships.

He also revealed that OPAPP is also improving its communication strategies and using social media such as Twitter and Facebook as well as soliciting the involvement of schools to “expand the discourse on the peace process.”

He explained that since peace is all-encompassing, there really is a need to explore all possible avenues to let the message out that peace is attainable and that the Aquino administration is serious in pursuing it and attaining it within six years. Albus D. Estabas

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