GMA News Online – Bongbong Marcos: Public opposition to Bangsamoro bill no surprise

By Amita O. Legaspi | GMA News Online

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Senator Bongbong Marcos expressed no surprise Thursday at the result of a Pulse Asia survey that suggests nearly half of Filipinos, mostly from Mindanao, oppose the passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law.

“Ganun talaga, expected yan. Yun ang sinasabi ko dito sa nangyari sa Mamasapano, nawala yung tiwala ng tao sa proseso ng kapayapaan. Ito ay nakakalungkot dahil kailangan nating bawiin yung kanilang tiwala,” the senator told reporters.

Because of this, Marcos said lawmakers should be transparent and accountable in handling the hearings of the BBL.

“Ito ay para makita ng tao kung bakit natin ginagawa yung ating ginagawa. That is why the hearings are all in public, wala naman siguro akong pinaplanong executive session. Basta’t tungkol sa BBL ,we will keep it open,” Marcos, chairman of the Senate committee on local government that is deliberating on the bill, said.

The senator also said that he will allow anyone who wants to speak or add their voice on the issue to talk during the hearings.

“Hindi lang pagmasdan at panoorin ng publiko, lahat ng gustong magsalita, gustong magdagdag sa usapan ay bibigyan ng pagkakataong makapagsalita sa mga hearing,” he said.

Marcos earlier said that he planned to resume the hearings of the BBL, which were suspended due to the Mamasapano clash, on Apr. 13 but only after the Moro Islamic Liberation Front submits its report on the incident.

On Jan. 25, members of the Special Action Force raided the house of Malaysian terrorist Zulkifli bin Bir alias Marwan and managed to kill him.

During the operation, government forces got engaged in a firefight with MILF members as well as with members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters and other armed groups in the area. Forty-four SAF members, 18 MILF fighters, and five civilians were killed in the incident.

“Sa ngayon wala tayong nalalaman tungkol sa pangyayari sa panig ng MILF. Mahirap gumawa ng peace process kung kabila lang ang ating nalalaman,” he said.

He said the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process and the International Monitoring Team have already assured his office that he will be provided with a copy of the MILF report once they receive it.

The BBL, which was crafted as a result of the peace agreement between the Philippine government and MILF, seeks to replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao and create a Bangsamoro political entity.

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