Duterte to create task force on Lumad concerns – Dureza
DAVAO CITY, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte will create a task force that will focus on the concerns of indigenous peoples in Mindanao, his chief peace adviser said.
In his speech at the 20th Seslon’g Festival in T’Boli, South Cotabato, on Tuesday, March 6, Chief Peace Adviser Jesus Dureza said Malacañang is preparing the executive order that will create the task force.
Dureza said the task force will also be involved in development initiatives for IPs. (READ: What the Lumad are fighting for)
“The President emphasized the need for greater convergence among national government line agencies on IP concerns,” he said, explaining the creation of the task force.
Following the announcement, the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process said in a statement that the task force will be led by retired Colonel Allen Capuyan, Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) Assistant General Manager for Security and Emergency Services.
Capuyan has been on leave from his MIAA duties since August last year, after Customs fixed Mark Taguba linked him to smuggling and corruption in the Bureau of Customs during the Senate hearing on the P6.4-billion shabu shipment from China. Capuyan denied the allegation. (READ: From Hello Garci to 'Big Brother': Who is Allen Capuyan?)
Dureza said Capuyan is a Manobo, an ethnic group in Mindanao. Many members of the Manobo in Davao del Norte are caught in the conflict between the government and the New People’s Army (NPA), the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines.
The Cabinet official said the task force will play an important role, as 75% of Lumad are supposedly recruited by the NPA.
Dureza said there is also a proposed EO “that seeks to provide recognition and protection of the IP’s rights and welfare across the country.” – Rappler.com