Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos Jr. has warned that violence like the Mamasapano incident will not stop as long as no final peace agreement is forged.
Marcos aired the concern, even as he urged the government not to blink in the peace process effort and make it a strong deterrent to arm encounters pending the forging of a final peace agreement.
“Whatever happens, we must continue the peace process because the alternative is war. If we do not continue the peace process, if we do not come to some kind of agreement, we will have a Mamasapano (clash) every week, every month, everyday,” Marcos said in a speech during the “District Conference 2015” of the Rotary Club District 3820 held on Saturday at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza.
He said that although the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) is being carefully studied by the Senate Committee on Local Government, which he chairs, the measure is “merely part of the peace process and what the terrible Mamasapano tragedy has brought out is very clearly that it is not the only part of the peace process.”
“The creation of the Bangsamoro government perhaps would be many steps in that direction but it will not bring us to the end result yet. We still have to think about all the other things that need to be done. We will try as best as we can to include all of those ideas, all of those principles, and all of those concepts in the BBL so that when it is finally passed and that is something we are going to be working on, the BBL is robust and can withstand any mistakes or obstacles,” Marcos said.
He said he would likewise look deeper into the root cause of the complaints of Muslim Mindanaoans and the reason behind the continued rebellion and secession movement.
“What we need to think about are things like what are the main complaints in Muslim Mindanao (and) why has there even been a secessionist movement that was still in the time of the Spanish, the Americans, and the time of every single president that has sat in that position,” Marcos said.
He recalled that soon after the Tripoli Agreement was signed (in 1976), massive development was given to Mindanao to convince the Moro National Liberation Front fighters to abandon rebellion and return to the folds of the society.
“Instead of going to war, instead of going to the hills, those fighters from then the MNLF could find decent jobs, could send their children to school, have a decent living so that they can feed their families, house and clothe their families. And that is what every single Filipino wants and for that matter that is what every single person wants and that is something we have to address,” Marcos said.