Martin challeges Abra leaders to make peace and order centerpiece of governance
by Maritess Beņas
BANGUED, Abra (14 September) -- "Let peace and order be the centerpiece of the new administration so that you can already push for a real and sustained economic development in this beautiful province of Abra."
This was the challenge posed by Cordillera Police Regional Director CSupt. Eugene G. Martin, to all the leaders present at the Provincial Peace and Order Council meeting held last Monday, September 10, 2007 at the Provincial Capitol Social Hall.
The council presented and approved the proposed Provincial Integrated Area/Community Public Safety Plan for the Year 2007 and the organization of the PPOC standing committees that would spearhead the implementation of the said plan.
Foremost among the peace and order and public safety issues that were raised during the meeting were the still high criminality rate and insurgency as presented by P/SSupt. Alexander A. Pumecha of the Abra PNP and Lt. Col. Raul V. Bautista of the 41st Inf. Battalion of the Philippine Army, respectively.
The Municipal POCs chaired by the municipal mayors also raised some major peace concerns particularly the still unresolved boundary disputes between and among the municipalities of Boliney, Manabo, Tubo and Luba most especially.
In this regard, Representative Cecilia S. Luna appealed to the mayors concerned that they should now find a way to facilitate the resolution of these boundary disputes as she emphasized the irrelevance of claiming more land areas since their share in the Internal Revenue Allotments will in no way be affected anymore as the amount had been fixed already. Moreover, the public lands which are the subject of the disputed areas, are not their personal properties anyway.
Governor Estaquio P. Bersamin, for his part raised the concern of some parents who called his attention on the issue of fraternity organizations in the schools. Relative to this. Dr. Rosita C. Brillantes of the Department of Education assured the body that they have already issued a memorandum to all the secondary schools in the province banning the organization of fraternities. For the part of higher education, she suggested that the issue be addressed to the Commission on Higher Education.
Martin likewise announced the positive response of both the warring political factions in Tineg to his initiative of brokering for peaceful negotiations so that Tineg may now take-off from its problematic political conditions that undermine the development of this resource-rich yet very poor municipality.
He also thanked Tineg Mayor Edwin Crisologo, who showed his sincerity and willingness to forge peaceful relations with his political rivals by coming to the PPOC meeting.
The PPOC meeting served as the venue for the signing of the Memorandum of agreement for the Joint Armed Forces of the Philippines - Philippine National Police Force Internal Security Coordinating Committee by the Maj. Gen. Melchor J. Dilo-dilo, Commanding-General of the 5th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army and PNP Regional Office-CAR represented by Martin. (PIA-Abra) [top]