December 4, 2010
Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan says that an end to the armed conflict around the country could lead to the emergence of cities such as General Santos, Cagayan de Oro, and Davao city.
“These cities emerged because of a window of opportunity created by a peace accord with the MNLF in 1996. Prior to that, these cities were underdeveloped. If we are to pursue aggressively peace negotiations and entice the private sector to invest, we will soon see the emergence of more progressive cities like Marbel, Iligan, Cotabato, and Zamboanga, as well as those in Samar and Bicol region where incidence of poverty remain high.”
The Aquino administration announced an 18-day truce this holiday season with armed rebels. Pangilinan says that the decades-old social unrest and armed conflict have cost the country tens of thousands of lives in the last half a century, and drained the national coffers of meager resources that could have been used to fund basic social services.
“We welcome the silencing of the guns of war this yuletide season. It is our genuine hope that soon, through a negotiated honorable peace settlement, these guns will be silenced for all time. May this generation of leaders achieve what previous generations have failed to do. May we as a nation achieve lasting peace in our lifetime—for the cause of progress, for the welfare of our nation, for the future of our children.”
Image Source: Bug-Os Reports