Nunungan, Lanao del Norte – The local government of Nunungan through its local officials expressed their profound sense of felicitations to the Armed Forces of the Philippine’s community-based initiative that helps much in encouraging cooperation and unity among its residents. The “Kalinga sa Bayan ng Nunungan” is a peacebuilding initiative for the youth by the 15th Infantry “Molave Warrior” Battalion, Philippine Army headed by Lt. Col. Ericson V. Rosana, under the command of 2nd Mechanized Infantry “Magbalantay” Brigade Philippine Army headed by Brigadier General William A. Alunday, AFP. The event was held at Masibay complex, Nunungan, Lanao del Norte hosted by the Local Government of Nunungan, the main partner of the event.

“ We are very much elated as recipient of the Kalinga sa Bayan ng Nunungan. Though the 15 IB has been transferred to other assignment, our people cannot forget the best experience they brought my communities”, Mayor Marcos Mamay of Nunungan town expressed. On the first day of the event of “Kalinga sa Bayan ng Nunungan” was the youth leadership training and teambuilding seminar. On the second day, the trained youth of Nunungan complimented in the arrangement of the event to effectively implement the program for the day. The Philippine National Police (PNP) headed by PSSUPT Leopoldo E. Cabanag represented by PSUPT Roland Batulan with his men and women personnel, was able to give slippers to children. The Panguil Bay Jaycees International headed by Ms. Edelyn “Buhling” dela Cruz gave ice cream to the children and conducted tree planting activity. They also requested Jollibee to send their mascot and entertained the people, and gave hamburger to children. The Department of Health (DOH) Region 10 also donated medicines during the event.

Lt. Col. Rosana extended his thanks to the peace stakeholders for sharing their resources for the very successful event. He said it is part of their responsibility to educate the people on peace-building within their area of responsibility, especially the children and the youth to become responsible citizens and good leaders in the future.

General Alunday said conflict started by the people with personal interest to have huge amount of money through illegal activities and recruit young people. He paused a question about what will be the future of the young people if they will hold firearms and violates the law then become wanted person? Definitely it’s none said Alunday. He added that the menace of the illegal drug targeting the young people will directly create damage to the mind and body of a person that will impacted to social disorder. Alunday advised the youth to do away with illegal drugs with close watch of the parents. Alunday said a peace loving and united family will have a peace and develop community.

Congressman Bobby Dimaporo in his message cited the Marawi crisis that mostly of the recruited members of Maute terrorist group are young people. He said “we will not allow the Maute and other terrorist group to come to Nunungan or in any places of Lanao del Norte, we will prevent them to create damage in our beloved province.” Governor Imelda “Angging” Quibranza Dimaporo said that the slogan of Lanao del Norte is “Peace and Unity for Development” she reiterated the destruction of Marawi was happened because their people allow the Maute to do it.” She added “we will not allow it to happen in Lanao del Norte.”

Engr. Jake Gerona, President of the Gawad Kalinga, Iligan City and Lanao del Norte said that they already started implementing the construction of 60 housing units in Sapad and hopeful to implement the same project in Nunungan. Their Malaysian partner will provide PhP300 Million a year intended to implement housing projects to be managed by the Gawad Kalinga. Mayor Aziz of Sapad, Lanao del Norte also present during the event.

However, he congress had already approved an ordinance for the circumferential road connecting from Sapad to Nunungan going to Sultan Naga Dimaporo (SND) already a national road, with the approval from congress through Congressman Abdullah “Bobby” Dimaporo. The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) is now responsible in working and maintaining the road project. ( with MGSD report)