By Antonio Colina IV
The draft of the new Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) is the “antidote of the violent extremism” in light of the ongoing armed clashes between government and Islamic State-inspired Maute Group in Marawi City, Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC) chair Ghazali Jaafar said.
“We humbly submit this new proposed BBL, this is the best antidote to violent extremism that has wrought havoc in many parts of the Bangsamoro,” Jaafar said during turnover ceremony of the new draft BBL at the Rizal Hall in Malacañan Palace Monday.
Jaafar, who is also 1st vice chair of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), said that if the draft BBL gets legislated in Congress, “it will erase the doubt on the peace process” and address the mistaken ideology of the extremists that feeds into the frustration of the Moro people.
He added that new BBL, which he believes reflects the diversity of interest of the Bangsamoro people, non-Bangsamoro indigenous people, and secular communities, is the new formula for a very elusive peace in Mindanao.
“The recent tragedy in Marawi City can only lead to isolation and public hatred over the extremists, we believe that what they have done to people of Marawi City, they did it out of frustration, what our people need is a just and dignified peace. They need the promises of peace that the BBL offers,” he said.
President Duterte vowed support for the BBL .
“Within the context of the Republic of the Philippines there shall be a Bangsamoro country,” he said.
Duterte hopes “to end the centuries of hatred, mistrust and injustice” between government and Moro rebels in Mindanao as he vowed to support the new draft Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) as it goes into Congress for approval.
“The draft Bangsamoro Basic Law embodies our shared aspiration of a peaceful, orderly and harmonious nation after decades of arm struggle and violence, we will soon come up with a constitutionally, consistent legal instrument that will lay the foundation for establishing the real and lasting peace in Mindanao,” Duterte said.
“The proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law puts into life and spirit the constitutional mandate provided in the 1987 Constitution, for the establishment of a truly autonomous region in Muslim Mindanao. This paves the way for meeting the just aspiration of the Bangsamoro people for self-determination, and that is consistent and reflective of the distinct and historical, cultural heritage and economic and social structures common to the people residing in Bangsamoro,” he added.
MILF chairman Al Haj Ebrahim Murad said the passage of the BBL will hopefully address the historical injustice committed against the Bangsamoro people and acknowledged that terrorists fighting the government have “filled the vacuum created by our failure to enact the basic law and feed into the frustration of our people. Even as we speak, fighting the distraction in Marawi continues.”
“The danger of violent extremism feeds into the frustration of our people and takes over the narrative of historical injustice so that it can justify its virulent ideology which in reality is never linked to the national aspiration of our people because it exploits the narrative of historical injustice. It is important to address legitimate grievances and correct historical injustice so that it will be denied a semblance of legitimacy,” he said.
“Today marks the end of our active participation in the shaping of the basic law and commences our complete trust in the ability of government to develop on the promise of peace and development of our homeland.” he added.
Once legislated in Congress, Jaafar said the Bangsamoro government to be established would be at the forefront of putting in place public order and safety, dispensing justice within the bounds of law, and addressing the basic requisites of a good life long denied to the Bangsamoro people.
He said they need passage of the BBL so “we can start rebuilding our lives.”
“Moros truly believe that in your time and under your leadership, we, the Moro brothers and sisters, have publicly declared time and gain will see the dawning of a government in Bangsamoro homeland which they truly deserve,” he said.
Tags: Al Haj Ebrahim Murad, Bangsamoro Basic Law, Bangsamoro Transition Commission, BBL, Duterte, Ghazali Jaafar, Manila Bulletin, Marawi, MILF, New BBL draft is antidote of violent extremism — Jaafar