Davao RPOC wants discussion with OPAPP on Framework Agreement

DAVAO CITY(MindaNews/ 26 October)—The Davao Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC) wants an audience with the government peace panel to discuss the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB).

On Thursday’s regular meeting at the Grand Men Seng Hotel here, the council approved a resolution that it shall come out with an opinion on the FAB agreed by the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

RPOC chairperson and Davao del Norte Gov. Rodolfo del Rosario said the council will request a dialogue with the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) to help them in making a final recommendation to the FAB.

The council is hoping to have a meeting with the OPAPP and the government peace panel not later than November 12.

“The resolution is for us to study the Framework Agreement so that we can recommend on how we can [help] push the final agreement. [While] we are not a part of the Bangsamoro area, we are a part of Mindanao,” del Rosario told MindaNews.

Del Rosario said the RPOC also wanted a meeting with the OPAPP for the information dissemination of the Framework Agreement to the members.

But before the meeting with the OPAPP, del Rosario said they will come out with an RPOC consolidated legal opinion, which would be the jumping point for the discussion with the government negotiating panel.

During the RPOC meeting, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio suggested that governors and mayors in the region submit their legal opinions on the Framework Agreement to be collated through the Department of the Interior and Local Government.

The council set the deadline of submission of legal comments from the local government units on November 5.

Del Rosario said the implementation of the Framework Agreement will still undergo a series of discussions and may also require some legislation.

“The opportunity is there for us to have a lasting peace. I would like to ask everyone here in Mindanao to really help out in coming up with the final agreement,” he said.

He said the RPOC will submit its final comments or recommendations to the OPAPP, hoping it will be useful to the government negotiating panel.

The government and the MILF signed the FAB last October 15 in a ceremony at the Malacanan Palace, which gained wide support from the Bangsamoro people, civil society groups and foreign institutions. (Lorie Ann A. Cascaro/MindaNews)