MANILA, Nov 5 (Mabuhay) —  The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) will recognize in an upcoming summit 600 local government units (LGUs) for their efforts in eliminating the Communist Party of Philippines – New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) in their territories.

Former NPA members wave their flags as they surrender to the government in a simple ceremony attended by LGUs. (MNS photo)

In a statement on Friday, Interior Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. said representatives of these LGUs would share their best practices in implementing the Support to Barangay Development Program (SBDP), during a summit slated to be held in Clark, Pampanga on November 7 to 8.

Abalos said the SBDP Summit aims to provide an avenue for the local chief executives to narrate their success stories and experiences in carrying out the SBDP and Retooled Community Support Program (RCSP), as well as in apprising them on the short- to medium-term direction of the peace programs.

“Ang SBDP Summit 2022 na ito ay napakagandang paraan para magkita-kita, mag usap-usap, at magbahagi ng karanasan ang mga insurgency-cleared LGUs sa iba’t bang panig ng bansa sa kani-kanilang SBDP at RCSP projects para mas mapabuti pa ang mga susunod na hakbang tungo sa mas payapa at progresibong bansa (This SBDP Summit 2022 is a great way for insurgency-cleared LGUs in different parts of the country to meet, discuss, and share experiences in their respective SBDP and RCSP projects to further improve the next steps towards a more peaceful and progressive nation),” he said.

Among the expected participants at the SBDP Summit 2022 are the provincial governors and city/municipal mayors of the implementing LGUs of the FY 2021-2023 Local Government Support Fund – SBDP; DILG central, regional, and field officers; NTF-ELCAC officials; and representatives of the Armed Forces of the Philippines

Expected to attend the program are Abalos, National Security Adviser and NTF-ELCAC vice chairperson Clarita Carlos who will deliver a statement supporting the National Peace Framework, and Department of National Defense officer in charge Undersecretary Jose Faustino Jr. who will likewise express his support for various peace initiatives.

Among the speakers during the event are Marlon E. Limboc, chairperson of Barangay Papaya, Nasugbu, Batangas who will talk about the experiences of the community as the barangay beneficiary of the RCSP and SBDP implementation; Mayor Rachel Ubana of Lopez, Quezon and Vice Governor Joseph W. Ascutia of Camarines Norte who will both discuss their strategies and best practices in the RCSP implementation; Governor Eduardo B. Gadiano of Occidental Mindoro who will discuss the RCSP and SBDP Impact on Peace and Development; and the Synergeia Foundation, Inc., which will share their experiences and learnings as a third-party monitor of SBDP projects.

During the activity, participating LGUs will also get to experience a gallery walk (photo exhibit) of featured SBDP projects across the country, which will hopefully inspire and encourage them on how to go about with their peace projects as peace advocates and champions in their respective localities.

The SBDP Summit 2022 serves as an avenue for the DILG, NTF-ELCAC, and LGUs to ensure vertical linkage of the LGUs’ Local Development Plans to the national peace framework. (MNS)