Halfway into Women’s Month, a forum on the participation of women in the peace process was held last Mar. 15, 2017 at the Ricci Hall, Community Center.
Organized by the Samahan Welfare Committee and Office of Student Affairs, it aimed to raise awareness on the importance of having women represented in peace negotiations between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP).
Speakers in the forum were Atty. Angela Librado-Trinidad, a GRP Panel Negotiator and Atty. Fatima Irene Adin, an NDFP Consultant.
Trinidad explained how women have a stake and interest when it comes to the peace process.
“When men go to war, it is the women and their children who are left behind, but not only left behind but also caught in crossfires, get wounded and etcetera. Diha pa lang na equation, dako gyud ang papel sa mga kababainhan sa peace talks.”
She also shared how she is the only female panel negotiator of the GRP but despite such, women are being represented through their committees.
Trinidad also outlined the milestones of the past Philippine presidents in terms of the peace process and emphasized how under the Duterte Administration, the longest ceasefire was commenced.
Adin talked about her take on achieving lasting peace.
“If we can address the roots of war, we can have lasting peace because is not the absence of war. You need to provide lands, jobs and social services. Even if we have peace, as in the case of ceasefires, but [if] none of these things are given, the people will not settle and wage for another war.”
The event ended with an open forum allowing the participants to ask questions to the speaker.