Friday, October 10, 2014

Bongbong, Guingona vow to raise stakeholders' concerns in Bangsamoro law

From the Website of MILF

Bongbong, Guingona vow to raise stakeholders' concerns in Bangsamoro law

COTABATO CITY, Philippines- Sens. Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and Teofisto “TG” Guingona III on Wednesday assured to raise in the Senate the views and sentiments of local stakeholders on the contents of the draft Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL).

Marcos and Guingona, chairs of Senate’s committee on local governments, and the peace, reconciliation and reunification committees, respectively, presided over at the campus here of the Notre Dame University (NDU) a consultation on the draft BBL.

The draft BBL aims to establish a Bangsamoro government that would replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao based on the March 27, 2014 Comprehensive Agreement on Bangsamoro, the final peace accord between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.

Among the issues raised by participants to the dialogue were the protection and right to separation benefits of thousands of ARMM career service personnel, whose offices can be deactivated once the draft BBL is enacted into law and ratified via a plebiscite, and many thorny political and land ownership concerns.

Most of the security problems in the ARMM and other Moro-dominated areas in surrounding administrative regions are rooted to territorial disputes and squabbles for ownership of lands involving Moro, Christian and non-Islamic indigenous hinterland groups.

Guingona had told reporters the draft BBL might possibly be enacted into law by first quarter of 2015.

Also tackled in the dialogue is the plight of the Moro National Liberation Front, which signed a peace pact with government on Sept. 2, 1996 through the efforts of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

The OIC is a block of more than 50 Muslim countries, including petroleum-exporting states in the Middle East and North Africa.
Marcos said he feels the need to consult Nur Misuari, founder of MNLF, on the draft BBL as well.

The consultation at the gymnasium of NDU, owned by the Oblates of Mary Immaculate congregation, was attended by leaders of the Muslim, Christian and lumad communities, and representatives from local civil society organizations.

Former Maguindanao 2nd District Rep. Simeon Datumanong, who spoke in the gathering, said Senate must also review the contents of the now 17-year government-MNLF peace agreement, in relation to the enactment of BBL, to ensure sectoral inclusivity of the proposed Bangsamoro government.

“This peace process already spanned six Philippine presidents, starting in 1973, so this is a very serious initiative. This will be a good legacy by the government,” said Datumanong.

Datumanong, as government negotiator, helped draft the government-MNLF “Tripoli Agreement,” signed on December 23, 1976 in the Libyan capital Tripoli. The pact was to become the reference in the crafting of the final GPH-MNLF truce.
He said Congress should focus attention on the MNLF’s assertion of having been left out in the national government’s separate dealing with the MILF.

The forum was also attended by North Cotabato Gov. Emmylou Taliño-Mendoza, Maguindanao’s appointed deputy governor, Ramil Dilangalen, and ARMM officials led by Gov. Haroun Al-Rashid Lucman and Regional Deputy Executive Secretary Rasol Mitmug Jr.
Guingona said the activity was more of a “feedback process,” meant to gather inputs that they can use as points for discussions when they deliberate on the draft BBL.


Duterte wants Cha-cha for federalism

CEBU - Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte visited Cebu on Monday as part of his campaign to push for a change in the present system of government from unitary to federal.

Duterte believes that a federal form of government will make the delivery of basic services faster.

His call for charter change is supported by the Federalist Party of Central Visayas.

Despite calls for him to run for president in the upcoming 2016 elections, Duterte insists he will not be seeking higher office in government.

"You don't need me. You will just waste your money on me," Duterte said.
The US has a federal system of government.

The Cornell University Law School describes federalism as “a system of government in which the same territory is controlled by two levels of government. Generally, an overarching national government governs issues that affect the entire country, and smaller subdivisions govern issues of local concern. Both the national government and the smaller political subdivisions have the power to make laws and both have a certain level of autonomy from each other.”

MILF Website

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