Basilan sends Abu Sayyaf surrenderers to various cities to learn livelihood
BASILAN, Philippines – As part of the continuing Program Against Violent Extremism (PAVE) in the province of Basilan, 200 former Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) members will undergo an exposure tour in Quezon City, Bulacan, Baguio City, La Trinidad, Benguet, and Los Baños, Laguna.
The ASG returnees were divided into 5 batches, with the first batch's exposure tour happening from Wednesday, November 13, to Tuesday, November 19.
The Advancing and Sustaining Good Governance and Community Actions towards Resilience and Empowerment (AS2G CARE) is designed to transform the mindset of the returnees from being fighters to productive citizens by exposing them to different trade industries, particularly in the agricultural sector in order to encourage them to engage in farming, the primary livelihood of the Basileños.
The first exposure tour involves 60 participants, including 40 ASG returnees, 7 military personnel who acted as security/facilitators, and 13 civilian facilitators composed of an ulama, an ALS teacher, and staff from Balay Mindanaw Foundation Inc (BMFI) and Nagdilaab Foundation Inc (NFI).
The said tour was conducted in partnership with the BMFI, NFI, Joint Task Force Basilan, and the provincial government of Basilan.
In March 2018, 37 ASG returnees had also undergone an exposure tour in Cagayan de Oro City wherein they were exposed to the outside world that they have not experienced during their stay in the armed struggle against the government. – Rappler.com