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The Official Publication of the Moro Human Rights Center Inc.


 

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Volume 1 Issue 1

Cover Story:
2001 MORO HUMAN RIGHTS REPORT:
More of the Same
by Erwin Francis Gaerlan

The Many Facets of Conflict Resolution
by Sophia Dimalog

The MORO HUMAN RIGHTS CENTER: A Reflection
by Erwin M. Gaerlan

The Universal Islamic Declaration of Human Rights

A Human Rights Framework For the Moro Struggle
by Cris M.Gaerlan, Jr.

Signs of Peace
by Sahara (Samira Gutoc)

Musings
by Faith Joan C. Mesa

News Bits
IMAN binuo ng mga estudyante
Moro Civilians Abducted by Military
- Jamal Matanog

Poetry Economics of War

(Continued)
The MORO HUMAN RIGHTS CENTER: A Reflection

by Erwin Gaerlan

A Reflection

Since its inception, service and commitment has always been the guiding spirit of the MHRC staff. These principles buoyed and kept MHRC afloat amidst incessant problems it has faced and one-way or the other, surpassed.

The specter of financial difficulty is foremost in the organizational problems confronted by MHRC since its establishment. Although MHRC was able to get few small funding grants from Funding Agencies but all these are short termed and activity-based supports. However this situation did not dampen the spirit of the staff. To be able to survive, MHRC made do with local solicitations and donations on various activities it has launched. Survival budgeting has always been the order of the day for the institution since it begun.

MHRC was able to maintain itself as an institution, implement its programs and run its operations amidst grave financial problems. Besides the fact of being way far behind the standards of existing bigger NGOís in terms of financial capability, the MHRC staff maintained strength and took pride in their work. This has become a mark of distinction of the MHRC from other NGOís.

Admittedly, however, this financial dilemma contributed greatly to the impediment of MHRCís institutional development. Because of financial constraints, staff turnover occurs disrupting the continuity of leadership and personnel of the institution. Thus, even the convening of the BOD becomes a problem and volunteer staffs are hired to fill in personnel gaps. This situation inadvertently led to the neglect for the institutional development of MHRC.

In another plane, the MHRC like other NGOís is not free from influences and reins of partisan bloc politics. This reality has plagued the NGO community for quite sometime and MHRC is not without a share of it. However, in the case of MHRC this reality is both a blessing and a debacle, depending upon how one looks at it and in what perspective and framework.

The political orientation and direction of the MHRC and the continuous supply of volunteer personnel can widely be attributed to the support given by a political bloc who undeniably has been instrumental for the institutionís creation. This can be accounted for as a blessing for somehow this support helped maintain the sustainability of both the work and manpower of the institution.

On the other hand, superimposing roles played by these political blocs can also be detrimental to the growth and development of independent dynamism not only of MHRC but also with any other institution. This role becomes a source of conflict and nuances in terms of stake holding, mandate and juridical identity. The political blocís over assertion of roles played beyond institutional mandate and organizational parameters blurs the legal character of the institution, stunts creativity and independent initiatives and creates an imagined yet distorted institutional growth. The MHRC experienced this before and until now this is still a prevalent practice albeit inconspicuously.

But then again, beyond the problems and dilemmas MHRC has faced, both in the organizational and political plane, the success of MHRC can be attributed mainly to the commitment and dedication of its staff to serve the Moro people, a resolve drawn from the struggle of the Moro people for self-determination.

Next: Quo Vadis, MHRC?