Bangsamoro Region

DTI, OPAPP rollout livelihood projects for ex-MILF combatants

By Apipa P. Bagumbaran

Mobile Rice Mills turned over in Camp Bilal, Munai, Lanao del Norte for former MILF combatants in the area. (PIA-ICIC)

MUNAI, Lanao del Norte, June 3–Despite the coronavirus diseases (COVID)-19 pandemic, the government remains steadfast to fulfill its commitment under the normalization track of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB).

This, as the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP), started today the rollout of mobile rice mill projects for decommissioned Moro Islamic Liberation From (MILF) combatants and their families in major MILF camps.

Under the Inter-Cabinet Cluster Mechanism on Normalization – Peaceful Return and Aggressive Inclusion Social Entrepreneurship (ICCMN-PRAISE) program, DTI and OPAPP turned over five mobile rice mills to Camp Bilal in Brgy Tamparan, this municipality.

Undersecretary Abdulgani Macatoman of DTI Special Concerns and Trade Promotions Group said the mobile rice mill project is one of the requests of Member of Parliament (MP) Abdullah “Bravo” Macapaar.

“Mayroon tayong mandato sa DTI paano makacreate ng trabaho at makapagturo tayo ng negosyo para magkaroon ng kabuhayan. Adhikain ng Duterte administraion na makapagbigay tayo ng pangkabuhayan at yung mga pwede nating maibigay at mapakinabangan dito sa Camp Bilal,” he said.

[We have a mandate in DTI on job creation and creating livelihood opportunities through businesses.  It is the aspiration of the Duterte administration to provide livelihood and whatever we can give that will benefit Camp Bilal.]

Seeking to transform government-acknowledged MILF camps into show windows of peace and development, the ICCMN-PRAISE helps decommissioned MILF combatants reintegrate into mainstream society and become entrepreneurs through the provision of livelihood projects and services.

Macatoman said it also includes the equipment needs of the project supported under a “usufruct arrangement” patterned after the Shared Services Facilities (SSF) program of the Department.

Meanwhile, MP Macapaar expressed his gratitude for the implementation of the normalization projects.

“Kami ay nagpapasalamat sa inyong lahat. Alhamdullillah, nandito na ng ibat-ibang proyekto at programa ng goberyno para sa mga community ng dating combatant,” he said.

[We are grateful to all of you. Alhamdulillah, the various projects and programs of the government are already here for the communities of former combatants.] 

DTI and OPAPP are also set to turn over mobile rice mill projects to Camp Busrah in Butig, Lanao del Sur and Camp Darapanan in Simuay, Maguindanao on June 4 and June 10, respectively. Philippine Information Agency

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