MORE THAN 150 former members of the extremist group Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) have recently completed an entrepreneurship program as part of their preparations for social reintegration.
“The entrepreneurship development training was part of the assistance of Project TuGoN purposely to capacitate former combatants on starting up business, financial literacy, business resiliency, and other important areas of entrepreneurship,” the Bangsamoro government said in a statement on Thursday.
A total of 152 ex-BIFF combatants participated in the series of trainings that were held earlier this month in the provinces of Maguindanao, Sultan Kudarat, and North Cotabato.
Similar trainings are set to be conducted in the other provinces of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) — Lanao Del Sur, Basilan, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi — for other rebel combatants who have laid down their arms.
The BIFF is a breakaway group from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, which signed a peace deal with the national government that paved the way for the new Bangsamoro region.
The training program is led by the BARMM’s Ministry of Interior and Local Government, in partnership with the Ministry of Trade, Investments and Tourism, and the military.
“The Bangsamoro Government will continue its drive to end local armed conflict and encourages other lawless groups to re-integrate to the mainstream society,” the regional government said. — MSJ