Pres. Duterte tells Bangsamoro Commission to chart the road to peace

DAVAO CITY-- President Rodrigo Duterte has asked the new Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC) to clear the road of obstructions until Mindanao finds the way to peace.

"I am urging the BTC to navigate the hindrances and obstructions at hanapin ninyo ang daan hanggang patungo ng kapayaan. Mahirap 'yan (and find the road until you reach peace)," the President told the expanded 21-member BTC during its launch here Friday night.

While there is a solution acceptable to everybody, the road to peace is a long journey, President Duterte said, assuring the commission that he will always be there to support them.

"Maybe in front of the Filipino nation, I will ask every Filipino to vote for it because it will make us a great nation, so I leave it up to you," he said.

On Friday night, the President witnessed the launch of the BTC, which will craft the new Bangsamoro enabling law for the implementation of the peace accords with the country's Muslim groups.

The event was attended by more than a thousand people representing the Senate and House of Representatives committees on peace, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), government agencies, and stakeholders. Among them were Presidential Peace Adviser Jesus Dureza; Irene Santiago, chair of the Government Panel Implementing the Bangsamoro Accords; MILF chair Al Haj Murad Ebrahim; and MILF vice chairman for political affairs Ghadzali Jaafar.

The BTC was formally created by virtue of an Executive Order signed by the President. Its members are Atty. Jose Lorena, Atty. Maisara Dandamun-Latiph, Samira Gutoc-Tomawis, Datu Mussolini Sinsuat Lidasan, Dr. Susana Salvador-Anayatin, Atty. Hussin Amin, Romeo Saliga, Hatimil Hassan, Atty. Firdausi Ismail Abbas, Atty. Omar Yasser Sema, Ghadzali Jaafar, Mohagher Iqbal, Abdulraof Abdul Macacua, Ibrahim Ali, Haron Abas, Atty. Raissa Jajurie, Said Shiek, Hussein MuAoz, Melanio Ulama, Gafur Kanain, and Ammal Solaiman, JD.

The EO was one of the agreements reached during the August meeting between the implementing panels of the government and the MILF in Malaysia, where they discussed the new Peace and Development Roadmap for the implementation of all signed peace agreements.

Bigger table

Dureza said this signals the start of the work to come up with an inclusive Bangsamoro law that will truly reflect and address the clamor for genuine political autonomy.

He said it is another milestone under the Duterte administration that provides the golden opportunity of fulfilling a promise for peace in Mindanao.

Dureza urged all members and stakeholders to come together and support the BTC members, who have the competence to craft the law.

"Hopefully, Congress approves it," he added.

The presidential adviser however hinted the involvement of all stakeholders.

"There is a bigger table where stakeholders are waiting to be heard," he said, encouraging everybody to "stay the course because the road to peace is not a smooth road". (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency

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