Friday, July 22, 2016
Book Launch: The Long Journey to Peace and Prosperity in Mindanao
The journey towards the elusive peace and prosperity in Mindanao has truly been long that it has yet to see the destination. I am not sue if we have even seen a sign that we are nearing it., as we continue to walk on the long and winding road. We already passed a lot of Presidents and until now that there is a new administration under Rodrigo Duterte, we continue to hope for a resolution.
This makes the book, "Mindanao: A Long Journey to Peace and Prosperity,"a definite must read publication as it contains the history and thoughts from the different authors compiled and edited by Paul Hutchcroft, Professor of Political and Social Change from the Coral Bell School of Asia Pacific Affairs and the Australian National University.
At a book launch held July 19, 2016 at Discovery Primea in Makati city, the key people involved led by Paul and Her Excellency, Amanda Gorely, Australian Ambassador to the Philippines, opened up the event to formally present the book.
Miriam Coronel Ferrer, Former Chairwoman of the GPH Negotiating Panel for Talks with the MILF, was there to give some perspectives on the on-going journey to peace and prosperity in Mindanao, together with Mohagher Iqbal, Chairman of the MILF Peace Panel, and Diosita Andot, Undersecretary for Operations from the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process. Secretary Jesus Dureza was also there but only among the audience as he let the Undersecretary do the talking up on stage. Amina Rasul, President of the Philippine Center for Islam and Democracy gave the closing remarks.
Some of the book authors present at the event, aside from Steven Rood, were Ronald Holmes, husband and wife team Edilberto De Jesus and Melinda Quintos De Jesus, Francisco Lara Jr, and Abhoud Syed Lingga.
The host or Master of Ceremonies, as well as one of the book authors, was Steven Rood, Country Representative of the Asia Foundation.
Congratulations mainly to the Australian Government which has invested almost A$150 million in peace and development in Mindanao, where Australia has been providing support to education, economic development, disaster risk reduction, and teh peace process since 1996. Their commitment towards the journey to peace and prosperity to the people of Southern Mindanao remains to be steadfast.