WestMinCom strengthens alliance with peace advocates in Mindanao 

DAVAO CITY: The Western Mindanao Command (WestMinCom) has strengthened its strong alliance with the peace advocates in Mindanao particularly the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) chaired by Founding Chairman Nur Misuari.

WESTMINCOM COMMANDER-MNLF CHAIRMAN MEETING: Lt. Gen. Alfredo Rosario, Jr., commander of the Western Mindanao Command (at extreme right) discusses the strengthening of peace alliance between the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) chaired by Founding Chairman Nur Misuari (sitting at the center) and accompanied by his Head Executive Assistant Radzhata Misuari, one of his wives. Lt. Gen. Rosario, Jr. is accompanied by Maj. Gen. Ignatius Patrimonio, commander of Joint Task Force Sulu (sitting 2nd from left). The exclusive meeting was held at the Davao City residence of Chairman Misuari last March 25, 2022. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Major Andrew Linao, spokesman of the WestMinCom on Sunday said Lt. Gen. Alfredo Rosario, Jr., commander of WestMinCom met with MNLF Chairman Nur Misuari in Davao City on March 25, at Misuari’s residence located in the aforementioned city. 

During their conversation, Chairman Misuari vowed to continuously collaborate and support the peace efforts of the military and the national government as a whole.
 “We are here to support your campaigns that would yield to the attainment of lasting peace in Mindanao, particularly in the Bangsamoro region,” Chairman Misuari emphasized.

MNLF CHAIRMAN: Despite many MNLF leaders have a self-proclamation too as the Front’s Chairman, Chairman Nur Misuari is still being recognized too as the legitimate MNLF Founding Chairman. At right is Lt. Gen. Alfredo Rosario, Jr. WestMinCom commander and at left is Major Gen. Ignatius Patrimonio, commander of Joint Task Force Sulu who both jointly raised the arms of the MNLF chairman as a sign of respect and honor him as the MNLF Legit peace advocate. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

The MNLF Chairman stressed that the AFP and the MNLF have established a good working relationship that is anchored on the 1996 GRP-MNLF Final Peace Agreement. 
Chairman Misuari also acknowledged the implementation of the government’s programs in the Bangsamoro which include the formulation of the MNLF Transformation Roadmap spearheaded by Secretary Carlito Galvez, Jr., Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation, and Unity (OPAPRU). 

Currently, the OPAPP, in partnership with the JTF Sulu and partner agencies, is finalizing the implementing rules and regulations for the MNLF Transformation Roadmap. 
The Roadmap includes all the government’s initiatives, projects, and other developmental activities such as socio-economic, community healing and reconciliation, and security and confidence-building measures that would be implemented in the identified MNLF communities.

Chairman Misuari also expressed his gratitude to the WestMinCom Commander for taking the time to visit and exchange ideas with him.

Likewise, Lt. Gen. Rosario, Jr. expressed his appreciation to the MNLF Chairman for the unwavering support to the command’s thrusts including the campaign against terrorism in Sulu.

 “Let us continue to work together for our common goal of winning the genuine peace for the Bangsamoro people to be achieved,” the WestMinCom Commander stated. 

During his visit to the MNLF Chairman, Lt. Gen. Rosario, Jr. was accompanied by Joint Task Force Sulu Commander Maj. Gen. Ignatius Patrimonio and his staff, WestMinCom’s Assistant Chief of Unified Command Staff for Civil-Military Operations Col. Wendell Basat, and other staff officers of the command. 

Also, the WestMinCom Commander graced the peace covenant signing held at the Mindanao State University in Marawi City on Saturday, March 26. The BARMM Peace Covenant was created to support the government’s campaign towards safe, accurate, free, and fair National and Local Elections this coming May 9, 2022.

The momentous event was organized by the Commission on Elections and participated by top AFP officers headed by the Chief of Staff of the AFP Gen. Andres Centino and PNP officials headed by Police Gen. Dionardo Carlos who was represented by Police Lt. Gen. Chiquito Malayo, the Director for Integrated Police Operations-Western Mindanao. 

Also in attendance were Department of National Defense Under Secretary Reynaldo B Mapagu; COMELEC Chairperson Saidamen Balt Pangarungan; Maj. Gen. Generoso Ponio, Commander of Joint Task Force ZamPeLan; Maj. Gen. Ignatius Patrimonio, Commander of Joint Task Force Sulu; Brig. Gen. Jose Maria Cuerpo II, Commander of 103rd Brigade; Atty. Ray Sumalipao, Regional Election Director for BARMM; Atty. Naguib Sinarimbo, BARMM Minister of the Interior and Local Government; and Police Col Christopher Panapan, Provincial Director of PNP in Lanao del Sur.
 
Lt. Gen. Rosario, Jr. said a strong alliance must be established among local chief executives, religious and traditional leaders, and Islamic organizations in Mindanao, particularly the provinces of Basilan, Maguindanao, Sultan Kudarat, North Cotabato, Tawi-Tawi, Sulu, and Lanao, to ensure peace and order on the election day and thereafter. 
    
“Rest assured the Western Mindanao Command continues to intensify its security operations to ensure that operational goals are attained and the stability in the communities is sustained,” Lt. Gen. Rosario, Jr. further said.

JULMUNIR I. JANNARAL 

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