Int'l conference tackles moving forward in the GRP-MILF peace process

The conference, which will be held at the Davao Convention and Trade Center will tackle the theme, “Building Bridges of Solidarity for the Bangsamoro Right to Self-Determination.”

Marvic Leonen, the Dean of the University of the Philippines’ College of law will deliver the keynote address after the welcome address by Mayor Rodrigo Duterte and the opening remarks of Pastor Reu Montecillo, chair of the Mindanao Peoples’ Caucus, the conference convenor.

Alonto and Razon will talk on “How to Move the Peace Process Forward?” with reactors from the Mindanao Business Council, Bishops Ulama Conference and the Mindanao Peoples’ Caucus.

The MBC will be represented by Dr. Maria Lourdes Arcenas, Advisor, Peace Dialogue for Sustainable, Responsible Investment in Mindanao. The BUC will be represented by Davao Archbishop Fernando Capalla while the MPC will be represented by Bapa Jose Akmad, council member.


MPC secretary-general Mary Ann Arnado will moderate a workshop on ways to move the peace process forward. 

On the second day, there will be five thematic workshops:  The State of Human Rights in the Philippines: Ovecoming Impunity and Abuses, facilitated by lawyer Zainudin Malang, Executive Director of the Bangsamoro Law Center; Returning to Nowhere: Struggles of IDPs in their Own Homeland by Ernesto Anasarias, Executive Director of the Balay Rehabilitation Center; Strengthening International Solidarity for Mindanao by Jun Aguinaldo Bans, Program Cooordiator, Initiatives for International Dialogue and Karen Tanada, Executive Director of the GZO Peace Institute;  Security Situation inMindanao: Responding to Threats and Challenges by Maj. Gen. Benjamin Muhammad Dolorfino, Commander, Philippine Marine Corps and Brig. Gen. Reynaldo Sealana, chair of the Coordinating Committee On Cessation of Hostilities; and Media and its role in Peacebuilding by Carolyn O. Arguillas of MindaNews and Dr. Dianne Aker, Executive Director of the Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace &  Justice.

Conference resolutions will be presented and adopted at the plenary in the afternoon. 

Timuay Melanio Ulama will deliver the closing remarks.


The city government of Davao is hosting the farewell dinner to be followed by a performance of the MindaSilang, a cultural presentation by the Kaliwat Theater Collective.


MindaSilang is a “contemporary portrayal of the Mindanao situation and how the tripeoples—Bangsamoro, Lumad, and Settelers—overcome the vicious cycle of animosity, prejudice and violence.”

A performance for the public will be done on March 17 at 7 p.m. also at the Davao Convention and Trade Center.

The third day, March 18, the 41st anniversary of the Jabidah massacre and reckoning date of the founding of the  Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF),  has been dubbed by organizers as “Mindanao Peace Power Day.”

The highlight of the day is a caravan from Davao to Cotabato and Mag
uindanao.  (MindaNews)