In the name peace and development in Mindanao, the Bangsamoro Development Agency (BDA) signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) with the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) today July 29, 2016 at the Asian Development Bank (ADB) Philippine Office, Pasig City.
ADB’s Vice President for Administration and Corporate Mananagemen, Ms. Deborah Stokes and Philippine Country Director, Richard Bolt warmly welcomed the BDA and MinDA in the forging historic agreement that shall strengthen collaboration between the two parties in facilitating and coordinating development programs in the Bangsamoro communities and contribute to strengthening capacities in planning, project development, monitoring and evaluation, policy advocacy and investment promotion and facilitation to help ensure complementation and convergence of initiatives in the Mindanao.
Both BDA and MinDA agreed and recognized that working together is vital to achieve peace.
“Working for peace and development is not the responsibility of a few but a concern of all “, Dr. Saffrullah Dipatuan, BDA Chairman stated.
He further stated that “In order to attain a kind of peace that is meaningful and lasting and for development to be successful and sustainable, all stakeholders must cooperate and collaborate with one another. And more importantly, the objective of this concerted effort must be for everybody and to the exclusion of nobody”.
Luwalhati R. Antonino, chairperson of MinDA in her statement said that the signing marked the high point of collaboration with BDA.
” This signing is a giant leap from both MinDA and BDA. We rely with each other with what we have achieve today”, Antonino added.
“We have to collaborate and cooperate without trying to outdo anybody. We do not work for credits but for the relevance of our work”, Antonino further said.
BDA is the development arm of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) mandated to determine, lead and manage relief, rehabilitation and development projects in conflict affected areas in Mindanao. The BDA is also the lead development agency to coordinate and facilitate the implementation of the BDP and its accompanying investment program.
MinDA on the other hand is mandated to be the lead agency that coordinates and integrates the formulation and implementation of various Mindanao-wide and interregional development plans, programs, and projects that will help facilitate inclusive growth.
MinDA and BDA envision inclusive growth for the Bangsamoro region and the entire Mindanao anchored on the Mindanao 2020 Peace and Development Framework Plan and the Bangsamoro Development Plan which are complementing peace and development roadmaps with shared goal of improved quality of life for Mindanawons and Bangsamoro.
To note, BDA and MinDA agreed to sign Area of Cooperation on February 26, 2016 at General Santos City.
“This signing of a Memorandum of Cooperation between BDA and the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) is long overdue. This should have been accomplished the previous year, or earlier. But as much as we desired it, it was left undone for one reason or another”, Dr. Dipatuan stressed.
With the hope that this signing ceremony may galvanize a meaningful collaboration between BDA and MinDA, Dipatuan conveyed to various partners that “we really mean business, and we are ready to work jointly for the benefit of our constituencies and community stakeholders”.