Reaction Paper: Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL)

Bangsamoro came from the words: Bansang Moro. I have watched an interview (The Bottomline with Boy Abunda) of ANAK Mindanao Party List Representative Sitti Djalia Turabin-Hataman (wife of ARMM Governor) - she said that even before the Spanish and American colonizers came to the Philippines they are a "a nation" on their own. They are even entering "Treaties" with other countries without the knowledge or permission of the Philippine Government. That somehow explains to us why the Moros (Muslim inhabitants of the Philippines) in our country are in a struggle to retain the government  of their own.



Being a Christian I can not fully understand their culture and beliefs, as well as the the Central Government MAY not- that is why the Aquino government is convinced that we must let them govern their own land and people with respect to that religious beliefs and culture.  It is always practical to elect a leader that knows his constituents very well - and most of the times, among them; like in the Muslim territory, a natural born Moro.

The Bangsamoro Basic Law will replace and abolish the Autonomous Region Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Organic Act.  BBL is an enhanced version of the existing ARMM. The said Law's primary aim is to promote long-term peace and ensure development and progress in the Bangsamoro region and to secure their identity being Moros. This road to peace process took us seventeen years(17) to realize.

According to former DILG secretary Rafael Alunan III (in an interview), many were not consulted - they said it's half-baked that is why many factions arise.  Before ratification there must be consultation first on the concerned people. To quote "Intent is good to bring peace to Mindanao but if it is not done right we're not gonna have peace but war."  As he said BBL is a fait accompli.  That is his sole opinion.

In my own opinion, there is no substantial reason why I can not say YES to BBL after reading and understanding the draft.  I have scanned the hundred-page draft of it to be ratified in Congress (that means still remains a "Bill" and not a "Law" yet unless ratified - passed in the scrutinizing and approval of the Philippine Congress consists of the senate and the house of representatives).  Take note, dear readers - it is not President Aquino's approval that is considered here BUT the approval of each of the senators and the representatives that we, the public, have chosen and  have elected in every district or province in the whole country.  We literally put our trust in them when we have voted for them during the election.  That is why, I am sure that we will all agree on this, that they know what they are doing- and they have us always in mind in every decisions they make or approve of.

Talking about the rebels and what had happened in the recent Mamasapano massacre - if we get too emotional, we can sacrifice the future of millions of youth and their families who are just ordinary people living within the Bangsamoro territory. And to share what I have learned from some research - the armed groups, as we know, is the product of the 1954 Martial Law declared by the late Ferdinand Marcos. The MNLF (Moro National Liberation Front), MILF (Moro Islamic Liberation Front) and BIFF (Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters) they are different from each other. MNLF is the parent organization from which the two came from. MILF is the disgruntled/dissatisfied members of MNLF - they formed another group when  MNLF decided to unite with the Central Government (the Phil. Gov't.). And the BIFF - is the offspring of discontented MILF members who then decided to establish another group apart from them.  To sum it up, every time the group of rebels decided to connect with the government there is always one or two members who would not cooperate and their option is to create another rebel group.  These rebels are just fraction of the entire Bangsamoro population that the government has taken into consideration upon bridging the gaps between the Philippine Government and the Bangsamoros.  We must understand that rebellion is not the heart of all Moros - father, mother and children. In fact, they opted for peace, recently about two million of the ordinary population has been displaced after the military has launched attack in Maguindanao to go after the rebels.  I have heard in an interview with the BIFF spokesperson Misry Mama that they have no intention of returning the guns they have seized from Fallen 44 and they do not agree on BBL - I remember him saying "all out war" with the government that maybe prompted the government to send military forces in their area.  The grenade and gun factory belongs to them.  MILF denied that they are the ones who get the uniforms and the guns but in the event of returning the armaments - it was discovered that one of the guns belonged to the recorded barbarous killing of a SAF member who was twice shot in the head. MILF returned the guns, they said they just found after the incident denying the overkill but they really participated alerted that they maybe the target of the SAF attack - that has not been coordinated by the government to them.  Anyway whatever and whoever who must have done this must be surrendered or yielded by the MILF to pay for it.  We can not afford injustice to our beloved fallen heroes but let us not SACRIFICE the welfare of the many common people if we do not approve of BBL.

BBL has a provision of FULL DISCLOSURE Policy of budget and finances - including revenues and expenditures meaning, the Central Government (Phil. Gov't.) will be well-aware and informed of the projects funded by the collected regional revenues - this answered my fear of the Moros (I wrote in my Fallen 44 Reaction Updated) might fund training of more rebels or weapons factory.

And to think of it thoroughly, the Moros can just have their revenues on their own, if they did not really wanted PEACE and they opted for more funds.  They would not allow the central government to intervene with their activities too - because we all know that they can fight and they could hold innocent hostages to get what they wanted.  Let us put our TRUST in them. In one of the BBL provisions it is stated there that the Bangsamoro Government shall share revenues from the region with the Central Governement (Phil. Gov't) - revenues from natural resources like crops all theirs, on mettalic 25 % shall be for the Central Gov't. and on non-metallic (such as gas) 50-50 sharing.

From all the taxes they will be charging their constituents - four percent (4%) of which is to the Central Government. That is because the Bangsamoro Gov't. shall be responsible for the healthcare, education and well-being as well as employment opportunities in the the region - that is an additional source of fund for those undertakings.

I scanned some other important details/provisions of the BBL Draft (I did not discussed above):

- whom shall be called Bangsamoros,

- what consists of their territory

- they have their own flag, national anthem, and emblem.

- the creation of Bangsamoro as a Political Entity (still under the Philippine's   Central Government whose commander-in-chief remains to be the President of the Republic)

-Inter-governmental Policies - there are actions that the Central Gov't shall be informed  especially if foreign dealings might risk National Security.  The Central Government shall send people to check if the policies of the BBL and the agrement is well-followed.

-BBL will also create a BTC (Bangsamoro Transition Commission) to take care of the region while still waiting for the May  2016 Elections for them to elect their "Chief Minister".

- Shari'ah Courts shall be strengthened but applicable ONLY to Muslims and the Civil Courts shall be maintained for the non-Muslims in their territory.

- the Rights of the IPs (Indigenous People) shall be well-respected

- the police force is still under the Central Government (Philippines).  The Chief shall be a Moro/Muslim but with 10 yrs. or more experience as a Police Superintendent, they will choose from the existing PNP.

-Plebiscite shall be held after the BBL Draft is passed in the Congress - to determine the territories/people who wanted to be part of the Bangsamoro. All those who belong to the ARMM shall automatically be included - the baranggays and municipalities or cities. Requesting Barangays with at least ten valid registered voters shall be included.

It is a YES to BBL for me.  Let us not be carried-away by others opinion about it.  We can study it on our own. I have provided the link of the BBL DRAFT below for your perusal and make your own decisions as to support it or not.  Let us be informed before giving conclusion.  And most of all, let us give our brothers the chance to have self-governance/self-determination, and be fathered by our National Government. Although we can not really blame the government, as the Moros said they had been neglected - before, they never wanted to be part of the country until ARMM Organic Act came.  BBL is just a proof that the ARMM region we knew today recognizes the Philippine Government being the higher authority to influence and impart on their growth - economically and in all aspects; simultaneously keeping their culture and beliefs.

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Sorry for the delayed release of this post.  I need to understand BBL that well because I find responsibility of providing you with the correct information about it before I can give my "reaction". I find it hard too get a complete and reliable source of the "BBL Draft" for my own study of it combined with my slow internet connection and the "hanging" problem of my PC...I remember I put my advisory of writing this on the "Site Advisory" page of my site weeks ago...

To my students page visitors, I advised you to read it but do not copy the whole article...and that is plagiarism! You may be caught of having similar "Reaction Papers" - there is nothing wrong with your opinions - justifying it gives color. Write it on your own understanding, in your own words.  It does not really matter if we have the same opinion or not on the issue. What matters is you can justify yours to make your paper convincing and powerful. It must have an introduction, your reaction (the body), the summary and the closing shall be your own  recommendation/suggestion.  I will also appreciate your telling my site to your friends - and be back after your assignments are submitted.  This site has more to offer than your assignments :)

Thanks for dropping by.  Have a great day everyone. Please follow Family, Daily Living & Style G+ Page to see every posts at a glance for easy selection of reading topics..


References:

Here is BBL explained Framework Agreement (BBL) by OPAPP. OPAPP - Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace Process

If you want to see the FULL Draft: BBL Draft from gov.ph
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Family, Daily Living & Style by Angelita Galiza-Madera is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.