BAGUIO CITY- The Philippine Military Academy (PMA) hosted the recent Forum on the Bangsamoro Basic Law in relation to the quest for Regional Autonomy in the Cordillera which was attended by cadets and representatives from various sectors not only from the city but also from the region.
PMA Superintendent Maj. Gen. Donato San Juan II, Regional Director, PIA-Region XI Cluster Head. PIA SouthCentral &Western Mindanao Efren F. Elbanbuena, Editor in Chief of MindaNews Carolyn O. Arguillas, Regional Director, PIA-CAR Cluster Head,PIA Northern Central Luzon Helen R. Tibaldo, Chair, Government Peace Panel Miriam Coronel-Ferrer, Chair, Moro Islamic Liberation Front Peace Panel &the Bangsamoro Transition Committee Mohagher Iqbal, Baguio City mayor Mauricio G. Domogan, and Chair, MindaNews Marcos Mordeno – attended the Forum dubbed Bangsamoro Peace Process & Cordillera Autonomy at Lopez Hall PMA Fort del Pilar. The said forum was about the Aim and Purpose of law if it was about to pass and accept by the Government.
Regional Director Elbanbuena begin the forum by asking why they are in northern part of Luzon? And it to meet the Peace between the two sectors which is the Government and MILF. The intent of the BBL is to achieve peace in Mindanao, the establishment of the Bangsamoro political entity is a recognition of the justness and legitimacy of the cause of the Bangsamoro people and the aspiration to chart their political future through a democratic process. It will secure their identity and posterity and allow for meaningful self-governance within the Philippines.
Chair, Government Peace Panel Miriam Coronel said that the “BBL ensures that the Bangsamoro remains part of the Philippines” because the Bangsamoro will not be a separate state, It will remain under Philippine sovereignty . Arguillas stated also the Cost of war from Economic Loss in Philippine peso during the conflict between bangsamoro and Government in which 20 billion per year or 640 billion was lost from 1970 to 2001, 640 billion economic loss in terms of damages to businesses and properties . The all out war policy in 2000 alone cost 1.3 billion under Estrada regime and from 1970-1996 War with MNLF the Government spent 73 Billion in terms of combat expenses. Arguillas also added the Human Casualties wherein nearly 120,000 people killed between 1970-1996 wherein 50% of them are MNLF, 20% Civilians and 30% AFP were killed.
The Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) will be the legal instrument that will operationalize the agreements as contained in the FAB and its annexes. Once enacted by congress, the Bangsamoro Basic Law will undergo a process of popular ratification by the qualified voters in the proposed core territory.
The said forum also stated the purpose of the BBL which is to establish a political entity, provide for its basic structure of government in recognition of the justness and legitimacy of the cause of the Bangsamoro people. The BBL will be the legal instrument that will operationalize the agreement as contained in the FAB and its annexes. Once enacted by Congress, the Bangsamoro Basic Law shall undergo a process of popular ratification by the Qualified voters in the proposed core Territory.
By JASON DE GUZMAN