Press Release
November 24, 2013


Sen. Grace Poe has filed a resolution urging the Senate to inquire into the Philippine government's development program for the Mindanao region.

"Mindanao is an important region in the country and we must ensure a comprehensive and fitting development program for the region and its people," Poe stressed.

Her Resolution No. 298 urges "the Senate Committees on Local Government and Peace, Unification and Reconciliation and Economic Affairs to conduct an inquiry, in aid of legislation, into the Philippine government's development program for Mindanao, especially its conflict-affected areas, to ensure the Mindanaoans' and the region's comprehensive inclusion in the path of accelerated growth pursued by the Philippines."

Mindanao, with its rich natural resources, agricultural outputs, and diverse cultures, possesses great potential for driving accelerated, inclusive growth, at the same time, it also has one of the highest levels of poverty in the country due to armed conflicts, peace and order issues, and governance challenges.

The World Bank, in its 2005 report, estimated that direct losses from internal conflicts in Mindanao from 1970 to 2001 reached $2 billion to $3 billion.

The recent uprising in Zamboanga City has also displaced thousands of families and resulted in casualties and economic losses for the Mindanao region.

Meanwhile, the proposed Bangsamoro political entity is also currently being ironed out by the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. It can be recalled that on October 15, 2012 or a year ago, the parties signed the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro in pursuit of elusive peace and development in Mindanao.

Poe's resolution stated, "It is deemed timely to review the overall development program for the Mindanao region, and accord it the necessary, full support which it deserves as a key region, and also as a fitting way to honor the slain soldiers and police in the cited recent uprising and give meaning to their acts of sacrifice for the country."

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