MILF urged to accept amendment to BBL

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Thursday, 19 February 2015 - Last Updated on January 13, 2017

Sen. Ferdinand Marcos urged the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to be more flexible to amendments to the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law following the botched police operation in Mamasapano, Maguindanao.

“We (lawmakers) are not out to make changes in the BBL just because we like to do so. We would be making changes, amendments, add or delete provisions because in our view, that is the best way to make a more robust and effective law,” Marcos said in a Philippine Star report.

The BBL will serve as the enabling law of the signed peace pact between the Philippine government and the MILF. Under the proposed law, a new Bangsamoro government will replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

The proposed Bangsamoro law would supposedly be the Aquino government’s legacy but its fate has become uncertain since the botched police operation last Jan. 15, which left 44 members of the Special Action Force of the Philippine National police killed, 18 Moro fighters and at least two civilians.

In an Interaksyon.com report, Marcos said the senate cannot “just rubber-stamp the draft BBL as it was given us.”

Marcos said, “let us not forget that our ultimate goal of BBL is for peace in Muslim Mindanao. And we will strive to pass the best BBL as possible so that we would achieve a true and lasting peace in Muslim Mindanao.”

Firearms returned

The MILF, for its part, has already returned 16 firearms of the killed members of SAF.

“There is a technical group for SAF that will look into these (firearms). We will just wait what the results of their examinations will be,” PNP deputy director Gen. Leonardo Espina said in a Philippine Daily Inquirer report.

The firearms were turned over to Espina, along with Defense secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Armed Forces chief Gen. Gregorio Catapang Jr., Interior Sec. Mar Roxas, among others.

Relatives to receive aid

Relatives of the killed 44 SAF members will receive a P100,000 cash aid from city government of Makati, according to a report.

“This is our humble way of honoring our heroes. This is our way of showing our heartfelt gratitude for their courage to remain true to their duty of safeguarding the peace up to their last breath,” Makati city Mayor Edwin S. Binay Jr. said in a Tempo report.

The Aquino government  was urged urged to indemnify the civilian victims who died during the police operation.

Apart from those killed, there are some 5,000 civilians that were affected. At least P300,000 worth of crops, too, were also destroyed.

“The lives of the residents have yet to return to normal, the farmers cannot easily go back to their farms for fear of possible clashes, and unexploded bombs in local fields. There is no normalcy in the lives of child residents, as evidenced by the significant decline in the attendance of students in elementary schools,” a fact finding mission report read.

Janess Ellao (82 Posts)


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