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European Union, BARMM launch Php1.5 billion Support to Bangsamoro Transition Programme

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In photo: EU Ambassador Luc Véron and BARMM Minister of Health Doctor Bashary Latiph signed today a Memorandum of Agreement for the #COVID19 vaccination rollout in BARMM. Also meeting with EU Civil Protection & Humanitarian Aid – ECHO partners in Mindanao, Ambassador Véron highlighted that “meeting the basic, urgent needs in food security, emergency livelihoods, water and sanitation, and COVID-19 vaccination of the most vulnerable conflict-affected and displaced population, that is the goal of ECHO in Mindanao”. Partnering with Action Against Hunger Philippines, CARE Philippines, Oxfam Pilipinas, Plan International Philippines, Save the Children Philippines and local NGOs, ECHO is providing rapid relief assistance to more than 424.000 vulnerable displaced population, including children.

The Delegation of the European Union to the Philippines and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao launched today 15 November the five-year Php 1.5 billion Support to Bangsamoro Transition (SUBATRA) Programme.

SUBATRA aims to help BARMM lay the foundation for lasting peace and development in the region by strengthening its institutions’ democratic governance capacities during the Bangsamoro transition period.

The Bangsamoro transition period includes the passage of priority legislation and the setting up of a BARMM bureaucracy to ensure uninterrupted delivery of basic services.

With support from SUBATRA, the BARMM executive, parliament, judiciary, and civil society will strengthen their capacities to drive and coordinate key transitional policies, exercise lawmaking, and oversight functions, adjudicate litigations, improve access to justice, and contribute to a peaceful transition.

EU Ambassador Luc Véron reaffirmed the EU’s commitment to supporting the achievement of lasting peace and development in the Bangsamoro region.

“With the help of the SUBATRA Programme, the BARMM will establish an autonomous regional government that will address the many forms of injustices in the region over the years,” the Ambassador said.

Ambassador Véron noted that the Bangsamoro transition period is a timely opportunity for stakeholders in the BARMM to heed the lessons of the past and journey towards a bright future for the region, “leaving no one behind,” he said.

For his part, Mr Ebrahim said SUBATRA helps BARMM provide regulatory standards while taking a facilitative and risk-proportionate approach in all levels of its new bureaucracy.

“SUBATRA helps boost the capacity of our regional government in crafting transitional policies and strengthening our Parliament’s ability to exercise its legislative, oversight, and representation functions during this transition period,” he said.

Mr Ebrahim added that SUBATRA adheres to local principles and existing efforts to avoid duplication and waste of resources while creatively adapting frameworks suitable to the ever-changing landscape of the Bangsamoro.

“The Bangsamoro is still learning, and we are miles away from the BARMM that we aspire for in the Bangsamoro Organic Law, but with SUBATRA and the EU by our side, we know that we can reach possibilities,” said Ebrahim.

The SUBATRA Programme is co-funded by the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation and Development. It started in July 2020 and will run until June 2025.

The United Nations Office for Project Services, Particip, the Bangsamoro Development Agency, and the Consortium of the Bangsamoro Civil Society are the implementing partners of the SUBATRA Programme.

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