Emphasizing the importance of the youth’s voice in addressing current social issues, more than 200 Bangsamoro youth leaders converge in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) participated in a conference on peace, security, and development in the light of the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) and the movement on federalism held on August 14, 2018 in Cotabato City.
(File photo of Bangsamoro youth in a conference in Cotabato City. Photo credit: http://unypad.org/)
Nizam Pabil, executive director of the Office on Bangsamoro Youth Affairs (OBYA), referred to the recent crisis in Marawi City where the youth’s participation has become instrumental in solving conflicts.
Pabil said the role of religious leaders is pivotal in preventing violent extremism underscoring “religion was used in justifying the problem to some extent, so it is also important to note that religious leaders can also help in addressing the problem.”
Pabil said the conference was organized not only to talk about violent extremism but also major issues.
“The youth has different perspective on these issues that is why we provided them a space to discuss and create a network,” Pabil said.
“Young ulama and professionals gather for this two-day event to talk about pressing issues: not only countering violent extremism, but the issues involved like BOL, and the talks on federalism,” Pabil said.
With the participants coming from Bangsamoro provinces, Pabil said the event is expected to have a sustainable effect on the region’s youth sector.
Aside from discussing the youth’s role in countering violent extremism, speakers such as Chairperson Mohagher Iqbal of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front’s (MILF) implementing panel, Lawyer Randolph Parcasio of the charter change consultative committee, and Dr. Susana Anayatin of the Bangsamoro Transition Commission talked about the newly signed BOL and federalism.
During the event, ARMM Regional Governor Mujiv Hataman encouraged the participants to create a political party to act as the voice of the youth sector in the upcoming Bangsamoro parliament.
The event was co-organized by the Office of Regional Governor, Department of the Interior and Local Government-ARMM, Regional Darul Ifta’, OBYA, and ARMM Development Academy.