BORONGAN CITY-The three bishops of Samar Island vowed to lead the peace negotiations with the insurgents in Samar.
During the 43rd Samar Island for Peace and Development (SIPPAD) assembly held on Thursday (Feb.20), Borongan City Mayor Jose Ivan Agda moved that the three bishops of the dioceses of Borongan, Calbayog and Catarman lead the peace negotiations.
The three bishops, Bishop Isabelo Abarquez of Calbayog, Bishop Crispin Varquez of Borongan and Bishop Emmanuel Trance of Catarman, represented by Rev. Fr. Fred Placa, agreed to the resolution.
“Local peace talk is very effective and applicable,” said Bishop Crispin Varquez of Borongan diocese.
In the SIPPAD assembly, the members talked about how poverty and corruption contribute to the discontent of the Samarnons that eventually lead them to join the rebels.
As to connectivity, the presence of roads that can discourage the rebels to stay in Samar, Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace Process (OPAPP) Secretary Carlito Galvez said he will ask the departments concerned to push the completion of roads in the three provinces of Samar.
Eastern Samar Governor Ben Evardone, in his welcome message, also committed to complement the road projects by allotting P50 million for road openings in distant barangays without access roads.
Representative Maria Fe Abunda also promised that while she is in Congress, she will ensure that roads will be built connected and fully funded.
Cabinet Officer for Regional Development and Security (CORDS) 8 Eduardo del Rosario invited SIPPAD to complete the membership of the Task Force End Local Communist Armed Conflict (TF ELCAC).
He also praised the SIPPAD for its help in its convergence effort and for drawing out support from the church and the private sector for peace and development.
Secretary Carlito Galvez of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) also promised to help by seeking other departments to assist help Samar rise from the clutched of poverty and insurgency.
(nbq/PIA E. Samar)