BUTUAN City, PH, November 21-22 — The Conflict Sensitive Resource and Asset Management (COSERAM) Programme joined academics and peacebuilders in discussing and presenting the contributions of culture to peace during the 3rd Mindanao Peace Studies Conference at the Father Saturnino Urios Univerity (FSUU) here.
Fifty-five (55) peacebuilders and academics attended the conference where various scholarly presentations, workshops and forum were held that centered on the theme “Cultivating Peace Through Deeper Understanding”.
Presentations by young scholars featured the morning’s activity on opening day. The Indigenous Peoples’ Forum and Dance Art Workshop which focused on the practices, traditions and experiences of the various Indigenous Cultural Communities (ICCs) in Mindanao highlighted the afternoon’s activity. During the workshop, participants were taught indigenous dances and painting methods.
Another highlight of the conference’s first day was the Communal Conversation where 12 baes and datus discussed their culture and traditions, among others, with participants. This was facilitated by Philip Anghag, senior advisor for the COSERAM core process Titling and Natural Resource Management in Ancestral Domain (NMRiAD).
The sharing by Professor Antonio Gabriel M. La Viña and Commissioner Maisara C. Damdamun Latiph highlighted the conference’s second day.
La Viña, a well-known peace and environmental advocate, educator, lawyer and current executive director of the Manila Observatory, shared his experiences as member of the government panel negotiating peace with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and his learnings from the experiences of other peacebuilders. Lawyer Damdamun-Latiph, member of the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC), shared the salient features of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) that is now pending in Congress.