Davao City, January 25 - Civil society representatives converged here for a two-day workshop that aimed to advance their participation in monitoring the implementation of PAMANA or Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan (Peaceful and Resilient Communities) program in peace and development communities (PDCs) that were established after the signing of the 1996 Final Peace Agreement between the government and the Moro National Liberation Front.
Held recently at the Ritz Hotel in this city, the workshop was attended by peace and development advocates and key members of the Federation of United Mindanawan Bangsamoro Women Multipurpose Cooperative (FUMBWMC). Also present were Sarangani Governor Rene Miguel Dominguez, Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Vice. Gov. Hadja Bainon Karon, Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) Assistant Secretary and PAMANA Program Manager Howard Cafugauan, OPAPP Director Susan Marcaida and PAMANA-Mindanao Dir. Enrico de la Torre, among others.
Cafugauan said the activity aims to boost the participants’ critical engagement in putting up transparency and accountability mechanisms in the implementation of the projects. He also expressed optimism that the PDCs will engage actively in choosing appropriate projects that should be prioritized.
“Projects should contribute to improved governance, poverty reduction and build community resilience” he added.
The PAMANA program, according to him, is a complementary track in winning the peace on the negotiating table.
Dominguez, who has PDCs in his province, expressed his thanks to President Benigno Aquino III in his keynote speech.
“We are all looking forward to this PAMANA Program,” he stated.
He reminded the participants on their crucial role in ensuring the successful implementation of the projects and their responsibility to influence the leaders in their communities.
“The biggest challenge for all of us Mindanaoans is to agree once and for all to have peace,” Dominguez added.
The participants underwent lectures, discussions and exercises on Planning, Implementation, Monitoring and Evaluation of PDC PAMANA projects; assessment on the viability, feasibility and sustainability of projects; Third-Party Monitoring (TPM) monitoring and evaluation tools; and Transparency and Accountability Mechanisms (TAM).
PAMANA is the P-Noy administration’s program and framework for peace and development in conflict-affected areas as well as those covered by existing peace agreements. It aims to reduce poverty, improve governance and empower communities through projects that enhance peace and socio-economic conditions.
PAMANA will be implemented in MNLF PDCs in 133 barangays located in 14 provinces and three chartered cities. Among the provinces that already formalized partnership with the government include Maguindanao, Lanao del Sur, Tawi-Tawi, Basilan, Sulu, North Cotabato, Saranggani, South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Lanao del Norte, Zamboanga del Norte, Zamboanga Sibugay and Palawan.