|09 Jan 2016|
|Government remains open to peace dialogue, Says Palace official|
|A Palace official on Sunday said the government remains committed to resolving any conflict in a peaceful manner.
Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the government is open to a dialogue with the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), New People’s Army (NPA and the National Democratic Front (NDF) that would lead to understanding and agreement.
“Nananatiling bukas ang peace table ng OPAPP (Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process) para sa CPP-NPA-NDF alinsunod sa commitment ng pamahalaan sa pagkakaroon ng isang makabuluhang proseso na maaaring humantong sa pagkakaunawaan o kasunduan,” said Coloma in an interview over Radyo ng Bayan.
However, Coloma said that while the government is open to a dialogue, it also has a responsibility to ensure the safety of its citizenry.
“Ang military operations ay isinasagawa upang pigilan ang karahasang ginagawa ng NPA laban sa mga mamamayan at upang magkaroon ng seguridad at kaayusan sa mga komunidad kung saan sila naghahasik ng ligalig,” he explained.
Coloma said the government is pushing for programs to deal with poverty, which is the root cause of insurgency in the country.
“Kaalinsabay nito, patuloy din ang pagsusulong ng mga programa na tumutugon sa kahirapan at kawalan ng oportunidad na siyang ugat ng insurgency sa bansa,” he said.
Noting President Aquino, Coloma stressed the need for the other parties to take the initiative to join the peace process and return to negotiations.
“Tulad ng sinabi ni Pangulong Aquino sa mga nakaraang panayam, ang pagbubukas ng usapang pangkapayapaan ay nakasalalay sa kanilang pagkukusang muling makilahok sa proseso at bumalik sa negosasyon,” the Palace official said.
The holiday season ceasefire between government troops and communist rebels ended last January 3. PND (jm)
|Palace stresses importance of total gun ban on election period|
| A Palace official on Sunday underscored the importance the total gun ban during the election period for the the May 2016 national and local polls.
The Commission on Elections (COMELEC) set the election period from January 10 to June 8, 2016.
Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said prohibiting the carrying of firearms and other deadly weapons during the election period is one of the most effective ways to ensure the safety of the public as well as the orderly conduct of the election.
“Mahalagang aspeto ng paghahanda para sa isang mapayapa at maayos na eleksyon ang pagpapatupad ng gun ban at nabatid na natin sa mga nakaraang karanasan, lalong-lalo na doon sa pinakahuling pambansang halalan natin ng 2013, na ‘yung pagpigil sa maling paggamit o iligal na paggamit ng armas ang isa sa pinaka-epektibong paraan para matiyak ang seguridad ng mga mamamayan at maging ang kaayusan ng ating halalan,” explained Coloma in an interview over Radyo ng Bayan.
Coloma said the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines would ensure the strict implementation of the gun ban.
“Kaya masinsing ipatutupad ito ng ating mga kagawad ng PNP at Sandatahang Lakas na deputized ng COMELEC para sa layuning ito ng pagtitiyak sa kaayusan ng halalan sa ating bansa,” the Palace official added.
COMELEC checkpoints that will be manned by the PNP or AFP personnel would be placed at strategic areas all over the country to observe the gun ban. PND (jm)
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