DAVAO CITY - Mayor Sara Duterte on Thursday signed Executive Order No. 34, creating the Davao City Peace Committee that aims to address insurgency in the city.
The mayor said localized peace talks should be achieved during her term, before the mandate of the committee expires in November 2018.
"They will be the group that will handle the initiative for the localized peace process. Duna ta'y (we have) members, three coming from the government, one from the City Social Services and Development Office, one from City Legal, a lawyer and one from the barangays, one from the Catholic Church. But we do not have a chairperson yet and two consultants working with us," the mayor said in her recent State of the City Address.
Among the functions of the committee is to serve as the negotiating arm of the city to establish political settlement with armed groups in the city.
The President's daughter also invited the New People's Army to surrender and promised they will be offered livelihood and employment at the city hall.
The national government cancelled peace talks with the Left following a string of rebel attacks on government forces.
The military has expressed approval of the initiative of the mayor and said this might be a stepping stone to a possible solution to the insurgency problem in the city after the GRP-NDF peace talks collapsed.
Brigadier General Bienvenido Datuin, assistant division commander of the 10th Infantry Division, lauded the mayor's move.
"I believe mas maganda siya, iyong local government units dito ma-empower din natin ang ground units," he said.