By Walter I. Balane
February 9, 2012
MALAYBALAY CITY (MindaNews/08 February) – Saying the town they call their own have refused to recognize them and give them assistance, residents of 10 villages in Bumbaran, Lanao del Sur wracked by fighting between armed groups have asked President Benigno Aquino III for help amid what they called a worsening peace and order situation.
The affected villages were identified as sitios Canaan, Kahayagan, Katipunan, Kilabuntod, Kabugangan, Janob, Trapal, New Israel, Pigsayawan, and Mt. Olive. About 3,500 people, mostly dumagats (settlers) and Manobos inhabit these areas.
An evacuee who is an official in one of the affected villages today told MindaNews that classes at the Upper Tigason Elementary School where some 300 are enrolled have been suspended since January 19, a day before new clashes erupted sending villagers to flee to Talakag town in Bukidnon.
In a letter dated January 8, the residents asked Aquino to consider their problem as a priority “as early as possible.”
They said they expect the President to resolve the problem “for our welfare and also to avoid more killings in this area.”
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