ARMM initiates Youth Peace Day
Cotabato City (September 10, 2015) – Underscoring the importance of the peace process in Mindanao, specifically the passage of a law on genuine Bangsamoro autonomy, the Coordinating and Development Office on Bangsamoro Youth Affairs (CDO-BYA) of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) spearheaded the first Youth Peace Day on Thursday, September 10, at the Office of the Regional Government compound here.
More than 200 youths from various schools in Maguindanao as well as those in North and South Cotabato and Cotabato City attended the event, which emphasized the youth’s role in achieving peace in Mindanao as well as in nation-building.
A long-lasting peace on the island currently hangs in the balance after a number of legislators in Luzon introduced what Mindanao leaders describe as watered-down version of the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law that would provide a Bangsamoro autonomy.
Among the highlights of the youth peace event was the tour of the participants to the different cultural mock villages located in the compound. The mock villages showcase the culture, tradition and way of living of the six of the major Moro tribes in ARMM namely Maguindanaon, Iranun, Maranao, Yakan. Tausug, and Sama/Bajao, including the Teduray tribe.
Isa Tom Del Monte, CDO-BYA executive director, said the activity is a continuation of the Bangasamoro Youth Hope Conference held from June 2 to 4 this year. Moreover, the activity is in support to the program of the regional government in promoting cultural understanding among the residents of ARMM and its nearby areas.
Saida Mae Aplal, 16, Grade 9 student from J. F. Grino Tacurong National High School, said the activity is an opportunity to gain new friends and to know more the different cultures of the major tribes in the ARMM.
Saidamen Aliodin, 18, Grade 9 student from Abubakar Siddique National High School in Barira, Maguindanao, said he will utilize the activity to gain more knowledge about people in the ARMM and promote peace to his co-participants.
The activity bears the theme “Youth: partners for genuine peace and development for the Bangsamoro.” (Bureau of Public Information)