DC-Peace de­cides no more peace talks with NPA

Sun.Star Davao - - FRONT PAGE - By Ka­rina V. Cañedo

DAVAO City Peace Com­mit­tee (DC-Peace) will no longer spear­head lo­cal­ized talks with the New Peo­ple's Army (NPA) and will now func­tion as a peace ad­vi­sory com­mit­tee tasked to con­tinue peace de­vel­op­ment in the com­mu­ni­ties. This was agreed by Davao City Mayor Sara Z. Duterte-Car­pio and DCPeace mem­bers dur­ing yes­ter­day's meet­ing fol­low­ing Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte's pro­nounce­ment declar­ing mem­bers of the Com­mu­nist Party of the Philip­pines/New Peo­ple's Army/Na­tional Demo­cratic Front (CPP/NPA/NDF) as ter­ror­ists last Tues­day.

"Since there is al­ready a pol­icy from the Pres­i­dent, what we will do is talk about is­sues in the com­mu­nity and we will su­per­sede the DC-Peace Ex­ec­u­tive Or­der with another Ex­ec­u­tive Or­der

and it will be named as Davao City Ad­vi­sory Com­mit­tee for De­vel­op­ment," Duterte-Car­pio said in a press con­fer­ence yes­ter­day at the City Mayor's Of­fice.

The city mayor said the com­mit­tee will not talk with the NPA but will in­stead talk to the com­mu­ni­ties.

"The com­mit­tee will talk to the com­mu­ni­ties now and they will start in Lu­miad, Paquibato," she said.

DC-Peace spokesper­son lawyer Elisa Lapiña, in a sep­a­rate press con­fer­ence, said the com­mit­tee will be go­ing out to the com­mu­nity and fo­cus more on bring­ing peace in the hin­ter­lands.

"Ang gusto ni mayor mala­man ang prob­lema sa com­mu­nity and we will ad­dress it," she said.

Lapiña added that they will not ne­go­ti­ate any­more with the NPAs af­ter they were de­clared as ter­ror­ists.

She said the com­mit­tee agreed to con­duct a strate­gic plan­ning to­day as they will be go­ing to an iden­ti­fied area on De­cem­ber 20.

Lapi¤a added that as ad­vi­sory com­mit­tee they will go to the area and gather barangay of­fi­cials and rep­re­sen­ta­tives. From there they will iden­tify how to start with the peace work.

Arch­bishop Ro­mulo Valles, DC-Peace mem­ber, said the ad­vi­sory com­mit­tee will give the mayor idea on how to pur­sue peace in a creative way.

DC-Peace con­sul­tant Irene San­ti­ago said the com­mit­tee will listen to the voice of the peo­ple in the com­mu­ni­ties.

She said this time their peace ef­forts will run from six months and one year.

Duterte-Car­pio, in a sep­a­rate press con­fer­ence, said the out­put she wants to get from the com­mit­tee is to in­form the city gov­ern­ment about the is­sues be­ing faced by the com­mu­ni­ties.

"What we want to do is ask the com­mu­ni­ties them­selves what they need and prob­lems [they are fac­ing]. The ad­vi­sory com­mit­tee will tell the mayor's of­fice about these is­sues," she said.

Duterte-Car­pio said since the term "peace and de­vel­op­ment" has been widely used and has brought a dif­fer­ent con­no­ta­tion to peo­ple; she as­sured that DCPeace is dif­fer­ent from the gov­ern­ment's pre­vi­ous pro­grams.

"It is dif­fer­ent be­cause the DC-Peace does not have mil­i­tary mem­bers. In fact ang Philip­pine Na­tional Police, which is in-charge with law and or­der, does not have par­tic­i­pa­tion on the DC-Peace, so it is purely so­cial ser­vices side, le­gal side for the city gov­ern­ment and the con­sul­tants we have in­vited to the com­mu­nity," she said.

San­ti­ago, in an in­ter­view prior to the press brief­ing of the mayor, said that dur­ing the planned visit to Paquibato dis­trict on De­cem­ber 20, the com­mit­tee mem­bers will bring limited num­ber of se­cu­rity with them.


I GOT THIS. Catholic Bish­ops Con­fer­ence of the Philip­pines Pres­i­dent Davao Arch­bishop Ro­mulo Valles holds the arm of a woman as he po­litely re­fuses to ac­cept the um­brella of­fered to him while walk­ing at Rizal Park to­wards San Pe­dro Cathe­dral de­spite the scorch­ing heat yes­ter­day afternoon in Davao City.

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