by Irma A. Guhit
SORSOGON CITY , September 5 (PIA) — The Office of the Presidential Advisory on the Peace Process (OPAPP), through its Southern Luzon representative Cristopher Azucena, oriented the members of the Sorsogon Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) of the revised Philippine Reintegration Program (PRP) in a meeting held here last week at the Sorsogon Provincial Management Office (SPMO).
According to Azucena the PRP first program implementation was contained in the Economic Development Corps (EDCOR) which was conducted from 1950-1954.
This was followed by the National Reconciliation and Development Program (NRDP) implemented from 1986-1991. Then it was reviewed and revised so from 1992-1993 what was implemented under the PRP was the New National Reconciliation and Development Program.
In 1994 under the PRP the National Program for Unification and Development was implemented from 1994-2000 followed by Expanded Balik Loob which was in effect from 2000-2003 and another name was coined to implement the PRP, implemented from 2007-2010 which was the Social Integration Program (SIP)
Azucena said that based from the findings from past experiences and records , the implementation of the program since 1986, around 275,147 former rebels and their families have benefited from the government reintegration activities and a total of P1, 835 Billion have been spent.
Under the NDRP/ NNRDP P1.28M was provided to 233,996 beneficiaries,
While under the NPUD a total of P385.55M was distributed to 40,396 beneficiaries. In the SIP, P253M was provided to 982 beneficiaries.
Now under the Aquino administration Prospects for Peace , the OPAPP has released the Framework for the Reintegration and Development of Former Combatants (FCs) now contained in the revised Philippine Reintegration Program.
It is anchored on four guiding principles and policies.
These four guiding principles and policies are : first, it should be locally driven and owned and nationally led ; second, built on broad partnership; third, time bound with clear exit strategy ; and fourth, subject sensitive and flexible.
Azucena also explained that under the locally driven strategy, provincial Local government units whenever practicable are focal points of authority, assistance and management. OPAPP and other national agencies will act or perform as oversight functions, monitoring and evaluation, provide policy direction, capacity building support and assist in resource mobilization.
Under the broad partnership strategy, government and non-government organizations are converged to assist and provide support programs and services.
Former combatants (FCs) , their families, communities of settlement, LGUs and other stakeholders should be involved in planning and implementation of the PRP.
Underscored by Azucena is that the program should be time bound with clear exit strategy. Meaning, the local reintegration plan are with clear outputs and timelines.
For this he said, “There should be effective monitoring and evaluation system installed at the start of the program to track progress of FCs and how the program will help them to be mainstreamed.
The last guiding principle he said for the PRP to be successful is that it should be subject sensitive.
“It should be a flexible packaging and provision of assistance that is context-specific , and needs and capacity based.It should utilize case work approach for each FC , allows for flexibility in implementation arrangement based on capacity to deliver”, he stressed.
“Most importantly respect for privacy of FCs and their family and need for confidentiality of some process be observed”, he said.”These guidelines on the revised PRP are of utmost importance so that as members of the PPOC, each one can really assist in the implementation and success of the program.
The delivery of the program according to Azucena to new surfacing rebels shall be done as need arises through local government and non-government partners as seen as appropriate.
The purpose of the orientation is also to organize the local reintegration team. (MAL/IAG, PIA Sorsogon)