BAGANGA, Davao Oriental– More or less 2,500 marched in Lingig, Surigao del Sur on Tuesday in support of the government’s peace building efforts that banner sincere messages of reconciliation and unity.
The said peace march is a culminating activity for the four-day peace building seminar conducted to re-orient people in former conflict-affected areas especially in the hinterland barangays of Bogac, Rajah Cabunsuan, Pagtilaan and San Roque.
One placard bearing the message “para sa kalinaw ug kalambuan” (for peace and development) says it all as the people in that municipality had long experienced the horrors of violence and armed threat that slowed the progress and threatened investors.
“Now, Lingig is ready to take off. We remind our young people not to be enticed to join again the armed rebellion. Lingig deserves to be peaceful and progressive,” Mayor Henry Dano said.
A total of five former rebels coming from the local communist movement fronts surrendered to authorities and 67th Infantry Battalion also joined the peace march. “The NPA deceives our young people into joining them. All I received in three years with them were broken promises of a bright future”, said.
Colonel Paterno Morales, of the 701st Infantry Brigade based in Mati City, enjoined the people to “converge with all stakeholders for peace”. “We invite those who are still in the communist movement to avail of the government’s social integration program and to become our partners in our journey to deliver peaceful, developed and resilient communities to our people,” he added.