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Ferrer hopeful BBL passage meets ‘deadline’

Breaking News • 23:45 PM Tue Aug 4, 2015
Malu C. Manar

KIDAPAWAN CITY – Professor Miriam Coronel-Ferrer of the government panel talking with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) is still hopeful the passage of Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) will meet the ‘deadline.’ The deadline they set is before the filing of the Certificate of Candidacy (CoC) in October for the 2016 elections, she explained. Ferrer said that if BBL is passed before CoC filing, the people in Muslim Mindanao, in particular, will know if the officials they are going to elect in 2016 would be for the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) or for the newly-created Bangsamoro entity. But this is going to be a race against time. It ain't over until it's over, she said. Ferrer said they have yet to read the committee report on the BBL and the substitute bill of Senator Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos, Jr., before they could push through revisions. Marcos was given until August 10 to file his substitute bill on the BBL. Marami pa ang puwede’ng magawa.Pero ‘di natin tiyak kung ano ang pag-uusapan paglabas ng committee report [ni Senator Marcos].Mas maige makita muna natin ‘yan(There are so many things that could be done.But we’re not sure what to discuss once the committee report of Senator Marcos is out.It would be nice if we see it first),” Ferrer said. This as the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC) has issued a resolution that opposed House Bill 5811 or the amended version on the BBL. The BTC said they wanted the original BBL. BTC and MILF panel chair Mohaqher Iqbal said the original draft of BBL, referring to House Bill 4994 and Senate Bill 2408, are consistent with the ‘letter and spirit’ of the Framework Agreement on Bangsamoro and the Comprehensive Agreement on Bangsamoro. The commission was tasked to draft the BBL after its creation on December 17, 2013 by virtue of Executive Order 120 signed by President Aquino III. For Ferrer, the BTC resolution that opposed the substitute bill is ‘an expression of concern.’ She said that among the issues raised by the BTC on the amended draft was its use of ‘area’ instead of ‘territory’, to refer to ‘territorial jurisdiction’ of the Bangsamoro political entity. Despite this, Ferrer is optimistic.She said the process would be completed as scheduled. Kung ang ating approach ay problem solving, makakapangalap tayo ng solusyon sa problema.Maski papaano, may pupuntahan ang lahat(If our approach is through problem solving, we can find solution to our problem.In this way, we can achieve something),” she said.

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