INASIA

Insights and Analysis

From Mindanao: Clan Feud Ceasefire

January 30, 2008

For more than six years the families of former Mayor Kahir Macapeges and his successor Mayor Nasser Imam have engaged in a notoriously bloody war that has left nine relatives and two bystanders dead and 13 others wounded. In the small municipality of Matanog in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), these political rivals have been embroiled in seemingly endless conflict over disputed 2001 election results. Throughout Mindanao, ongoing wars between families have escalated to claim the lives of more than 5,500 in the last three decades. Commonly called rido, this violent form of family feud has plagued communities and hampered broader peace efforts in the region. On January 30, 2008, members of the Macapeges and Imam families met in Davao City to sign a peace covenant and conduct a reconciliation ceremony.

The Imam-Macapeges resolution ends one of the region’s most infamous disputes that wrought devastating emotional losses, destruction to property, and ” because security resources were sometimes focused on protecting the two political figures ” disruption of day-to-day municipal governance in this Philippine island. This settlement comes after a series of strategic interventions designed by The Asia Foundation, with funding support from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and conducted by mediators from Community Organizers Multiversity and supported by the ARMM Regional Reconciliation and Unification Commission.

Since 2007, the Foundation has helped train local peace mediators, and its local partners have helped to resolve 42 rido cases. Extensive research conducted by The Asia Foundation and analyzed by leading conflict experts was published in last year’s Rido: Clan Feuding and Conflict Management in Mindanao.

Click here to read more about the Foundation’s definitive reference book Rido: Clan Feuding and Conflict Management in Mindanao or here for an excerpt from the book.

Related locations: Philippines
Related programs: Conflict and Fragile Conditions

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