OPAPP, MSU-GSC partner for PEACE NOW 2.0
by Jovar G. Pantao, Ph.D. and Monlouie M. Sorzano, LPT
The Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) and Mindanao State University-General Santos City (MSUGSC) partnered in the conduct of PEACE NOW 2.0, a culmination activity for National Peace Consciousness Month, last September 25, 2019.
With the theme ‘Tapang at Malasakit para sa Kapayapaan’, the month-long celebration was concluded with PEACE NOW 2.0, an activity featuring a tri-people parade, a salubong – a simulation of peaceful coexistence of diverse people in Mindanao, tribal performances, and different artistic outputs in the form of letters, poems, and songs by Fundamentals of Peace Education (FPE 101) students of the university. Another significant part of the program was the launching of the University Peace Messaging Hub, a virtual platform that features peace and development efforts in different parts of the region and in Mindanao.
OPAPP Secretary Carlito G. Galvez, Jr. graced the event and shared the message that, “wih the strong leadership and political will of the Duterte administration, we will no longer pass on the Mindanao conflict and local communist armed struggle to our future generations.” He further remarked that the President Duterte wants to resolve the insurgency problem before his term ends and not pass it on to the next administration.
University administration also showed strong support with the presence of various officials headed by the University Chancellor, Dr. Anshari P. Ali and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Dr. Mishell D. Lawas who each shared a message during the event.
PEACE NOW 2.0 aimed to raise the consciousness and understanding of the public on the comprehensive peace process to sustain institutional and popular support and participation in building a culture of peace in the Philippines. The main objectives of the activity are to (1) engage and showcase localized peacebuilding best practices/platforms from various peace partners towards its sustainability and replication; (2) update the public and generate common appreciation of the state of the comprehensive peace process and the gains achieved I the past year; and (3) gather aspirations and commitments of various sectors and strengthen/ sustain popular support for participation towards just and enduring peace achievements.
Along with the culmination of the Peace Consciousness Month is the post celebration of the International Peace Day with theme, “Climate Action for Peace”. This year’s theme highlights the importance of climate action as way to safeguard the world and promote peace. Drawing attention from the threats posed by climate change, the celebration this year invests on the idea that concrete ecological action is of great help to achieve peace.
PEACE NOW 2.0 is a sequel activity of the university after its last year’s active participation in the National Peace Consciousness Month held last September 2018 with a theme “Mithiing Kapayapaan: Samasamang Isakatuparan” which successfully raised the level of awareness of the MSU community on peace and development. The university deemed it necessary to sustain the efforts in support of the Proclamation No. 675 issued in 2004 to instill greater consciousness and understanding among the Filipino people. The MSU-GSC lives its mandate in promoting Culture of Peace through its Resolution No. 356, S. 2017 which mandated the offering of a 3-unit course on Fundamentals of Peace Education (FPE 101) in all undergraduate courses for students.
The institutionalization of the FPE 101 classes serves as a pro-active response to the pressing need of building peace and harmony in a multicultural Mindanao and promoting appreciation of the value of life, human dignity, and respect for religious and cultural diversity necessary in developing them as peace builders and peace advocates.
The Official Newsletter OF MSU-GSC