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PIA Press Release

Abra to launch "Botosko, Dayawko, Bantayak!"

by Maritess Benas

Bangued, Abra (24 October) -- The local media and college students here have come up with the localized version of "Boto Ko, Ipatrol Ko", as their participation in peace-building in the province in the 2010 elections..

In a special meeting of the local press people called by the Philippine Information Agency last October 17, the group will launch this program dubbed "Botosko, Dayawko, Bantayak!" on December 4, 2009 during the opening program of this year's celebration of the Abra Week for Peace.

The Abra Week for Peace 2009 (AWP) is now on its second year. The AWP was launched last year as an offshoot of the Local Peace Special Assembly (LPSA) which was conducted in the province and attended by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo herself.

The AWP was conceived as a response mechanism to the 'unpeaceful' condition in the province brought about not only by insurgency but more by political wardlordism.

As a sustained effort towards peace-building especially that the election period is nearing again, the program "Botosko…" is conceived for youth participation with the hope that this could be a preemptive measure to thwart election-related violence. Ultimately, it aims to scrap the name of Abra province in the list of election hot spots of the Philippine National Police.

Meanwhile, the UGNAYAN Committee came up with this rooster of activities during the celebration of the AWP 2009 from December 4 to December 10.

Day 1 will have a "Peace parade" around the Bangued Town Proper followed by an ecumenical celebration at the Bangued Town Plaza. The "Botosko, Dayawko, Bantayak!" will be launched together with the Trade Fair to be facilitated by the Department of Trade and Industry.

The next day will have the inter-collegiate forum/debate on election-related violence.

The third day is the conduct the 2nd LGU-Tribal Elders Symposium. Simultaneous with this is the conduct of a medical/dental mission in the flood stricken areas particularly the flood-prone barangays of Isit and Cardona in Dolores, and Aguet in Lagangilang. These areas were chosen in favor of Sta. Rosa and Cabuloan in Bangued because of the difficulty of access to the provincial center for medical assistance.

The fourth day will have the Youth Forum on the "Role of the Youth in Good Governance" and a dance drama competition based on the theme of the AWP 2009 celebration. The third batch of the Youth Leadership Summit will also be launched on this day.

On December 8, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, will be the inter-agency action in a rural municipality. This year, the Action will be conducted in Malibcong.

December 9 will host the Ateneo School of Governance. The researchers will present the result of their action research on the election-related violence committed in the province of Abra. The presentation will form part of the 2nd Leaders Peace Summit in the province. The Leaders Peace Summit will be participated by all candidates for elective positions during the 2010 elections.

In the afternoon, there will be a Rock Concert by the YLS and the Band of the 41st Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army.

The AWP 2009 will culminate on December 10 with the signing of a Covenant on Non-Violence during the election in 2010. (PIA-Abra) [top]

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