Makati Business Club urges gov’t, MILF to hasten final peace pact

KORONADAL CITY (MindaNews/14 May) — A major business group in the country asked on Friday the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to hasten the forging of a final peace agreement.

“We hope that the Philippine government and the MILF will soon be able to arrive at a sound resolution of the issues standing in the way of attaining long-lasting peace and prosperity in the conflict-ridden areas of Mindanao,” the Makati Business Club (MBC) said in a statement posted on its website.

The group made the call as it clarified that there was no formal dialogue between the MBC and the MILF, as other media entities have reported (not MindaNews).

“We would like to publicly state that no such formal dialogue, with official representation from both MBC and the MILF, has taken place,” the business group said.

On May 6, MILF peace panel members held a forum in Makati City, the country’s financial capital, attended by business executives from the Management Association of the Philippines and civil society representatives.

It was organized by the Mindanao Business Council, International Alert, Mindanao Peoples Caucus and the Asian Institute of Management.

“MBC did not initiate or organize this activity,” the statement said.

The forum was part of the MILF peace panel’s series of consultations with non-Moro sectors.

The MBC stressed it commended the efforts of the MinBC and its partners in creating avenues for multisectoral stakeholders’ discussions concerning the Mindanao peace talks.

Founded in 1981, the MBC is composed of senior business executives representing the largest and most dynamic corporations in the Philippines.

Jesus Dureza, former government chief peace negotiator in talks with the MILF, described the recent consultation of the MILF peace panel in Makati as “not a usual event.”

“Unusual because there is no other rebel group anywhere in the world that I know of that meets with leaders of business and reveals its negotiating framework even while no settlement yet is in place and even answering questions to clarify. In the past, this was exclusively a panel-to-panel activity, done behind closed doors. Now, it’s in the public domain,” Dureza recently wrote in his syndicated “Advocacy Mindanow” column.

The MILF peace panel’s dialogue with business and civil society leaders in Makati came on the heels of the second formal meeting between the government and MILF panels under the Aquino government last April 27 and 28 in Kuala Lumpur.

The MILF has already submitted its proposed comprehensive compact last February, and the government is expected to submit its counter-proposal during the next meeting on June 27-28, according to their joint statement. (Bong S. Sarmiento/MindaNews)

URL: http://www.mindanews.com/top-stories/2011/05/15/makati-business-club-urges-govt-milf-to-hasten-final-peace-pact/

Related Posts

There are no related posts on this entry.