THE Joint Task Force (JTF)-Sulu in collaboration with partner agencies initiated a Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (PCVE) activity in the province of Sulu.

The PCVE dubbed "Football for Peace" was held last week in the towns of Panamao and Luuk in the second district of Sulu.

A football competition, initiated by the Marine Battalion Landing Team-7 (MBLT-7) headed by Lieutenant Colonel John Paul Jacia, was held at Panglima Agga Elementary School, in Seit Lake Poblacion, Panamao town.

Major General Ignatius Patrimonio, JTF-Sulu commander, lauded the initiative of MBLT-7 for their efforts to insulate the youth as vulnerable targets from the deceptive narratives of the Abu Sayyaf bandits.

“This is a good opportunity for the younger generation to be more active in sports. It will give them a sense of direction and will keep them from harm's way," Patrimonio said.

Colonel Vicente Mark Anthony Blanco, III, 4th Marine Brigade commander, said that a total of 50 participants from the two municipalities were seven to 12 years old.

Blanco said that the initiative was intended to sustain the gains and maintain the momentum of the peace and security campaign of the JTF Sulu in the Second District.

"It is important that we invest our time to mold the character of the children for they are the next generation of Tausugs. Involving them in sport will give them a sense of discipline and responsibility at their young age," Blanco said.

The Football for Peace is a diplomatic sports movement facilitated by volunteers of football enthusiasts promoting their advocacy of uniting people through sports.

They orchestrate peace tournaments with local partners and schools utilizing football as an effective tool to engage and influence some of the most vulnerable and hard-to-reach children and young people. (SunStar Zamboanga)

Source: SunStar (