Malacañan hopes for MILF’s acceptance of approved version of BBL

UNTV News   •   May 6, 2015   •   2554

FILE PHOTO: President Benigno S. Aquino lll witnesses Bangsamoro Transition Commission Chairman Mohagher Iqbal hand over of the draft Bangsamoro Basic Law to Senate President Franklin Drilon during the turnover ceremony in Malacañan Palace on September 10, 2014. Witnessing are Secretary Teresita Quintos-Deles, Speaker of the House Feliciano Belmonte, Jr., and Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa, Jr (not in the picture). (Photo by Gil Nartea / Malacañang Photo Bureau)

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañan hopes that the Moro Islamic Liberation Front will accept the resulting version for the legislation of the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law.

PCOO Sec. Herminio Coloma, Jr. Said, “We trust that our lawmakers will give due attentions and consideration to the peace council’s report in their continuing deliberations on the BBL.”

Malacañan believes that the lawmakers will consider the submitted reports and recommendation from the peace council on the passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law.

According to Presidential Communication Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr, the primary goal of President Aquino on establishing the peace council is to examine the provisions of the BBL and facilitate deliberations in the congress on the proposal towards establishment of Bangsamoro government

Malacañan hopes that the MILF group will accept any version of the proposed BBL that will be approved.

”Of what we understood, they are full pledged partner of the government, full pledged partner means on every chapter they are ready to unite to their partner,” Coloma added.

Malacañan added that, in the end, the public will have to decide if the legislated version of the BBL is acceptable

“The important decision will be based on the opinion of our boss; the people who will vote in the plebiscite,” reminded coloma.

MILF Peace Panel Chair Mohagher Iqbal previously stated they could not accept any major changes to some provisions of the proposed BBL which was based on the established Bangsamoro Comprehensive Agreement. (NEL MARIBOJOC/UNTV NEWS)

1 dead, 4 wounded in MILF faction clash in Maguindanao

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 14, 2020

An armed confrontation between two factions of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) led to the death of one member and injury of four others.

According to initial reports, the group of Salik Kiko and Ben Tikaw traded bullets in Barangay Tukanalipao, Mamasapano, Maguindanao on Monday (October 12).

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Western Mindanao Command (WestMinCom) Commander Lt. Gen. Corleto Vinluan Jr. said Salik Kiko is a delisted member of the 118th base command of the MILF while Ben Tikaw is a member of the 105th base command.

In an encounter that lasted for six hours, a member of Salik Kiko’s group identified as Alimudin, was killed while three others were wounded. One member from Tikaw’s group was also injured.

The AFP said they deployed personnel from the 33rd Infantry Battalion in coordination with the local officials and the Philippine National Police (PNP) to closely monitor the situation.

“We are still waiting for the results of the investigation as to why these two groups clashed,” Vinluan said. AAC (with reports from Dante Amento)

Gov’t eyes special scholarship program for decommissioned MILF combatants

Robie de Guzman   •   November 7, 2019

Agents of an independent decommissioning body inspect surrendered firearms in the town of Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao, Philippines, 07 September 2019 (issued 08 September 2019). More than six months after the Bangsamoro Organic Law was ratified in a plebiscite, Muslim rebel group, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) turned over close to a thousand high-powered firearms to an independent decommissioning body, reports said. 

MANILA, Philippines – The government is eyeing to provide a special scholarship or capacity development program for decommissioned members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and their families.

The program is among the key points provided in the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed by the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP), Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

CHED chairman Prospero de Vera III said the MOU, which was signed last Oct. 30, aims to provide assistance and ensure access to quality tertiary education in the BARMM.

The MOU was inked by De Vera, OPAPP Secretary Carlito Galvez, Jr., and BARMM Technical Education Minister Mohagher Mohammad Iqbal.

“We are assisting the BARMM consistent with the policy of President (Rodrigo) Duterte that all young Filipinos must have access to quality education and that no qualified student is denied access to education on account of poverty,” De Vera said in a statement.

He added that the implementation of initiatives relating to higher education is consistent with Executive Order No. 79 or the Implementing Annex on Normalization Under the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro.

Aside from providing special scholarship program, the MOU also seeks to do the following:

  • Determine the areas to extend technical assistance to the Ministry of Basic, Higher and Technical Education (MBHTE) in relation to BARMM higher education institutions (HEI) and the CHED Registry;
  • Capacitate MBHTE in monitoring the compliance of BARMM HEIs with the standards of quality education;
  • Communicate to DSWD the importance of ensuring the inclusion of underprivileged BARMM students and the children of decommissioned MILF combatants and selected beneficiaries from the Six MILF camps in Listahanan 3.0;
  • Encourage the deputized Expanded Tertiary Education Equivalency and Accreditation Program (ETEEAP) HEIs in Mindanao to help children of decommissioned MILF combatants and selected beneficiaries from the six MILF camps to complete their undergraduate study;
  • Offer study grants and capacity-building programs to target beneficiaries, subject to existing laws, rules and regulations and procedures
  • Propose professional development programs to faculty and staff of BARMM HEIs through the available CHED and other national government funds;
  • Mobilize leading HEIs to provide technical assistance to BARMM higher education needs identified by MBHTE;
  • Provide MBHTE with necessary assistance in the creation of a tribal university system;
  • Assist MBHTE with the necessary technical assistance in the crafting of the Education Code.

Galvez, for his part, said they are requesting Congress to allocate funds for the implementation of the scholarship program for the decommissioned combatants.

“I hope that through this agreement, we shall be able to reach out to those students residing in the ‘last mile’ areas, the underserved and most especially, the children of decommissioned MILF combatants. We are committed to supporting them until they achieve their full potentials,” he said.

Galvez believes the recipients of this program will eventually become the next leaders of the BARMM and strong advocates of peace and moral governance.

DOLE, OPAPP allot P100M employment fund for ex-Moro fighters

Robie de Guzman   •   October 21, 2019

Agents of an independent decommissioning body inspect surrendered firearms in the town of Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao, Philippines, 07 September 2019 (issued 08 September 2019). More than six months after the Bangsamoro Organic Law was ratified in a plebiscite, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) turned over close to a thousand high-powered firearms to an independent decommissioning body, reports said. EPA-EFE/STR

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on Monday said it has signed an agreement with the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace Process (OPAPP) that would create an initial P100-million emergency employment fund to assist returning rebels of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

The agreement was signed by Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III and Presidential Peace Adviser Carlito Galvez Jr.

DOLE said the agreement will extend its Integrated Livelihood and Emergency Program aimed to assist the socio-economic development and confidence-building of estimated 7,000 decommissioned MILF combatants.

“This partnership is focused on assisting former rebels to transition into civilian lives, and facilitate their transformation and the six MILF camps into peaceful and productive communities through employment facilitation, and sustainable livelihood assistance,” Bello said in a statement.

DOLE said that under the agreement, the department will assist in the implementation of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) Normalization Program through the provision of emergency employment under its Tulong Panghanapbuhay Para sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displace Workers (TUPAD) program.

TUPAD is an emergency employment program for displaced workers, underemployed, and seasonal workers.

DOLE will also provide employment facilitation programs and services to the former rebels under the Government Internship Program and Special Program for Employment of Students.

The labor chief said this initiative is in support of the Duterte administration’s agenda of achieving just and lasting peace by reaching out to former rebels and provide them with sustainable livelihood and employment opportunities to address the root causes of violent extremism.

Galvez, for his part, expressed hope that this partnership will help in transforming six MILF camps into peaceful and resilient communities.

“We hope that through this collaboration, DOLE will continue to provide support during the succeeding stages of the normalization program and bring us closer to our vision of achieving ensuring peace and sustainable development in Bangsamoro,” Galvez said.

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