President Aquino pushes for reasonable, just, acceptable Bangsamoro Law

MANILA, July 29 (PNA) -– President Benigno Simeon Aquino III affirmed that he will aggressively push for the enactment of the Bangsamoro Basic Law that will formalize and implement the provisions of the historic Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) that the Government of the Philippines (GPH) and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) signed in March 2014.

“Sa abot ng ating makakaya, isusulong natin ang isang panukalang batas na makatuwiran, makatarungan, at katanggap-tanggap sa lahat (To the best of our ability, we will push for a draft bill that will be reasonable, just, and acceptable to all),” the President said during his fifth State of the Nation Address (SONA) Monday delivered before a joint Congress at the Batasang Pambansa.

The President emphasized government’s strong commitment to see the process through towards the establishment of the Bangsamoro political entity.

“Napakarami na nga po nating narating dahil sa tiwala – at wala tayong balak basagin ang tiwalang ito. Ang gobyerno niyo ngayon: may isang salita (We have already achieved a lot because of trust — and we will never betray this trust. Your government will keep its word),” he said.

In keeping with this, President Aquino called on Congress to ensure the law’s swift passage to be able to entrench the Bangsamoro Transition Authority as early as possible in 2015.

Currently, both panels are hard at work in its due diligence efforts in combing through the proposed law.

“Mahalagang maging masusi ang paghimay natin ng bawat probisyong ilalatag (It is important to be thorough in checking all the provisions that will be included),” the President said.

Government chief negotiator Miriam Coronel-Ferrer related that the government and MILF peace panels are finding good solutions to the sticky issues on the draft BBL.

“We met over the weekend and made progress on two important articles pertaining to fiscal autonomy and the structure of the Bangsamoro government,” Coronel-Ferrer said.

The Parties will resume discussions on the proposed law after the celebration of Eid’l Fitr.

Meanwhile, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Teresita Quintos Deles appealed to the public to continue to support the peace process in spite of the snags in the crafting of the Bangsamoro Basic Law.

“There are difficulties that lie ahead and I am sure that there will indeed be many more but let us not lose hope. Keep the faith and work with us in bringing to fruition real peace and development in the Bangsamoro,” Deles said. (PNA)