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Lanao del Sur checks rebel regrouping

Marawi City—The provincial local government unit (LGU) of Lanao del Sur is promoting social cohesion by improving on two-way radio communication system in communities to forestall future regrouping of terrorists.

Governor Mamintal Bombit Adiong Jr. said the provincial government was working on enhanced mode of “social cohesion, inclusion and peaceful community engagement” in a sustained partnership with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).

Adiong said he believed the role of the local radio groups was vital in relaying relevant information to the public, especially in the grassroots level.

Lanao del Sur,particularly Marawi City and Butig became convergence area for violent extremists who took the city under siege in seven months in  2017.

Sultan Anshary Maongco of the Marawi Boundary Action and Radio Communication, said addressing multiple concerns involving “misinformation, disinformation, stigma and discrimination among communities affected by COVID-19,” was also associated to “strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.”

Licensing a two-way radio communication group is also a challenge, added Maongco. 

Adiong said the provincial LGU and the UNDP had earlier formed a Technical Working Group on Prevention and for Transformation of Violent Extremism which now organized Lanao del Sur’s radio communicators into a “Two-Way Radio Communications Groups on Advocacy Towards Promoting Social Cohesion, Inclusion and Peaceful Engagement.”

Jennie Alonto Tamano, head of Lanao del Sur’s Provincial Information Office, said community radio communication groups met recently to organize themselves into an advocacy group, “promoting social cohesion, inclusion, and peaceful engagement, as opposed to extremism.”

Alonto Tamano said the TWG on Prevention and for Transformation of Violent Extremism would also help local radio groups develop strategies in “addressing and combatting misinformation, disinformation and the stigma of discrimination among communities affected by COVID-19, along with intergroup conflicts and violent extremism.”

The working group, along with community radio communicators, will “craft and share appropriate content messaging on COVID-19 prevention and response, peace-building and prevention of violent extremism,” she said.

Radio groups-participants were also guided in drawing up a shared work-plan on communication and advocacy, she said. 

Topics: social cohesion , local government unit , Mamintal Bombit Adiong Jr.
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