DILG urges provincial governments to create own task force vs insurgency
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Tuesday urged local governments in the country’s 81 provinces to create their own task force against insurgency, following the creation of a national task group to end armed conflict with the communist rebels.
“With no less than President Rodrigo R. Duterte himself taking the role as national task force chairperson, provincial governments should follow his lead by taking more active and decisive actions to counter communist terrorist groups through the creation of a provincial task force,” DILG Secretary Eduardo Año said in a statement.
Año said local government units, including in the provinces, play a key role in ending the decades-long conflict with the communist movement.
He said local officials are “more grounded on the societal issues in their localities which are being exploited by communist terrorist groups to influence locals to take up arms against the government.”
“Putting an end to insurgency does not only require a military solution because this will address only one facet of the issue. We should therefore work together and put our acts together as one nation — starting from the provinces, cities, towns and barangays — to lick the insurgency problem,” the DILG chief said.
Año said the primary responsibility of the provincial task force to be created is to harmonize and optimize government efforts and resources at the provincial level to address the root causes of insurgency and attain sustainable peace.
In December 2018, Duterte signed Executive Order No. 70 that institutionalized a nationwide approach in dealing with insurgency through the creation of National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict. /je
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