Iloilo Gov Art Defensor is W. Visayas peace and order chair

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ILOILO CITY — Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Jr. was appointed by President Rodrigo Duterte as the Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC) chairperson for Western Visayas.

In a press conference , Defensor said he would take his oath of office before the president on Oct. 28 at the Malacañang Palace.

He said the RPOC was akin to the Regional Development Council (RDC), considered as the “highest regional policy-making body”.

“Councils are made primarily as policy-making bodies and their powers are recommendatory,” he said.

In line with the governor’s thrust on social justice, Defensor vowed to help maintain peace and order in the region as well as in the campaign to end the insurgency. “We will deliver what is expected of us,” he assured.

Last week, Defensor participated in the Visayas Island Group Summit with the Cabinet Officer for Regional Development and Security (CORDS) in Cebu City.

During the summit, Defensor noted that the whole-of-nation approach in ending insurgency requires the participation of all the local government units, even those that are not facing an insurgency problem.

The administration’s whole-of-nation approach also pushes for the establishment of the Provincial Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (PTF-ELCAC).

Defensor said the provincial government also prepares for the creation of its PTF-ELCAC.

DILG memorandum circular 2019-125 states that the creation of the PTF-ELCAC should be through a joint resolution of the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) and the Provincial Development Council (PDC).

The province is waiting for the PDC’s approval of the resolution passed by the PPOC on Oct. 4.

Aside from RPOC, Defensor was also nominated as chair of the Regional Development Council. (PNA)