Focusing on the importance of peacebuilding through change, millennial leaders Hon. Datu Pax Ali Sangki-Mangudadatu, mayor of the Municipality of Datu Abdullah Sangki, Maguindanao, and Kaharudin Dalaten, municipal administrator of the same municipality, shared their experiences as government officials at an early age.
“The only thing that is permanent in this world is change, and change will always bring sacrifices. Sacrifices, once done with a purpose, lahat yan ay magiging worth it,” Mayor Sangki-Mangudadatu said.
The youngest mayor in the Philippines at the age of 21 also highlighted the difficulty of imposing good governance.
“Lahat po niyan have to undergo to certain process kung saan at kalian. We have to fail, we have to feel depressed, and we have to feel at certain times, losing,” he added.
Delaten stated that two rebel groups were encouraged to be part of the community and the mainstream after surrendering.
“Just last week, we have fourteen members of BIFF (Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters) who surrendered and now willing to be part of our government,” he said.
He also introduced “Sangkad Ka, Das,” a program established by the current mayor’s administration to uplift peace and overall development in Maguindanao through advancing basic social services. Some of its projects include the establishment of Halal public market, sanitary landfill and central materials recovery facilities.
“This is a localized governance which envisions to promote innovation and sustainable development in the areas of Maguindanao,” he explained.
He also admitted that it is not easy to lead a municipality but being a millennial allowed them to think of unconventional ways to tackle the issue.