Palace hails House committee report on BBL

MANILA MalacaAang on Wednesday lauded the move of committees of the House of Representatives to approve the committee report on the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) without any amendments.

We welcome the passage of the Committee Report of House Bill 6475, which provides for the Basic Law for the Bangsamoro, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a statement.

Roque reiterated that President Rodrigo R. Duterte himself has expressed his support and commitment to the BBL.

He said the President has always described the BBL as a significant step towards our quest for real and lasting peace in Mindanao.

By having a Bangsamoro region within the context of our Republic, we will realize the aspirations of our Moro brothers and sisters for genuine self-determination and hopefully end the decade-long armed struggle, violence and injustice in Mindanao, Roque said.

The House committee on Muslim affairs, voting 27-3, committee on local government, voting 32-3, and the special committee on peace, unity and reconciliation, voting 27-3, approved the committee report on House Bill 6475 or the BBL.

Authored by House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, HB 6475 provides for the BBL and seeks the abolition of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

The bill is based on the proposal submitted by the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC) to Duterte.

It aims 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 and their aspiration to chart their political future through a democratic process that will secure their identity and posterity and allow for a meaningful self-governance.

Majority Leader Rodolfo Farinas earlier said the House will approve the BBL before Congress adjourns sine die on May 30.

Anak Mindanao Rep. Amihilda Sangcopan, meanwhile, called on Duterte to certify the bill as urgent and expedite its passage before the sine die adjournment.

Earlier, Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim said that he believed that the BBL only has a chance of being passed during Duterte's term.

Presidential Peace Adviser Jesus Dureza said that Murad made this remark during Duterte's meeting with leaders of the MILF, BTC and government peace panel last March.

If this does not get done during the presidency of President Duterte, we seriously doubt if we can do it at all, in the future. President Duterte is now our only and last card," Dureza quoted Murad.

Dureza pointed out that Duterte said he would push both chambers of the Congress to pass the BBL and even go to the extent of exercising executive action if the Congress should fail.

The President said he would assist even to the extent of relaying to both chambers of Congress his determination to help push for the passage of the BBL that is compliant with the Comprehensive Agreement of the Bangsamoro and as close as possible to the new draft law submitted by the Bangsamoro Transition Commission, Dureza said.

In the event this does not take place in Congress, he said he would go to the extent of even exercising his residual powers thru administrative directives to fulfill this commitment, he added.

Dureza also noted that Duterte assured the inclusive character of the new BBL where all tribes and sectors, including non-Muslims, will benefit when it is finally entrenched. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency

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