Sagada seeks Pamana inclusion-A A +A
Friday, October 19, 2012
SAGADA, Mt. Province -- The inclusion of Sagada town as a special development area under the Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan (Pamana) program of the government was referred to the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace Process (Opapp) following a resolution of the Municipal Council.
Earlier, the Municipal Council requested President Benigno Aquino III to include Sagada as a special development area under the Pamana program administered by the Opapp office headed by Secretary Teresita Quintos Deles.
Vice Mayor Richard Yodong said the Sagada people suffered long enough due to bloody operations between the New People’s Army (NPA) and government armed forces, demanding services as the Pamana program intends to provide to communities long affected by conflict.
The Pamana program includes projects on livelihood and infrastructure support on agriculture implemented in communities affected by violence and conflict between armed groups.
The resolution noted the suffering of the constituents of Sagada especially during the ‘80s when three innocent children died due to heated operations between armed combatants of the NPAs and the 50th Infantry Battalion of the government military forces.
The resolution recalled the fear that civilians experienced in going out to the fields to work endangering one’s life being caught in crossfire, or becoming a suspect on both camps as a supporter.
The precarious situation led to the demilitarization of Sagada eventually declared as a peace zone, which eventually reached the Coalition for Peace and the Peace Commission then headed by Secretary Alfredo Bengzon.
In May 1993, the National Unification Committee headed by the late Chairman Haydee Yorac with Senator Rodolfo Biazon recognized the Sagada peace proposal and subsequently declared six areas and Sagada as peace zones.
The municipal council also forwarded the said resolution to Social Welfare Secretary Dinky Soliman and National Defense secretary Votaire Gazmin for their information. Gina Dizon
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on October 20, 2012.