GMA News Online – Senate to discuss BBL substitute bill in Monday’s caucus

By Amita Legaspi | GMA News Online

gmanewsonline_logoThe Senate is set to discuss in a caucus on Monday the substitute bill for the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law.

“We will be having a caucus after the opening of the session on Monday. Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr, chairman of the committee on local government, has informed the Senate President that the BBL substitute bill will be submitted on Monday, August 3,” Senate President Franklin Drilon said before adjourning the session.

Majority Leader Alan Peter Cayetano said they will inform all the offices of the senators so that they will be aware of the caucus.

Marcos earlier said that he would submit a substitute bill that would truly allow peace in Mindanao.

“Hopefully it can be made into a real good law that would start to promote the peace process, that will start to address the real issues such as self-government and autonomy. Then, maybe we will take a significant step towards peace,” he said.

He also said that the version of the BBL that Congress would pass must be “in the context of, and within the framework of our constitutional democracy.”

Marcos said he sees the BBL as an attempt to renew the government’s commitment to peace and development with the people of Muslim Mindanao by recalibrating the grant of autonomy earlier given to the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

He earlier said that he decided to just craft a substitute bill to remove the unconstitutional provisions included in the draft submitted by Malacañang.

He said the draft BBL grants the Bangsamoro government greater and wider powers than what the constitution allows autonomous regions to enjoy.

“This gives the impression that the Bangsamoro government is a separate entity from the Philippines,” Marcos said.

“What do all these observations lead to? If Congress were to pass this exact version of the BBL as drafted by the Palace, then the resultant law would clearly and grossly violate our Constitution,” he added.

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