OPAPP enlightens Sulu Bangsamoro Professionals on OLBARMM

JOLO SULU - The Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process OPAPP explained Republic Act 11054 or the Organic Law for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao BARMM to Sulu Professionals during an activity at the Sulu State College Gymnasium on November 18. 

The activity was sponsored by Sulu Bangsamoro Professionals.

As the event was scheduled, the President of Sulu State College issued a memorandum requiring the faculty, the staff, non-teaching employees, and students to attend the activity.

The activity was aimed to let the Honorable Justices of the Supreme Court know that there are plenty of Sulu residents who are in support to the implementation of the Bangsamoro Organic Law BOL. 

The Bangsamoro Professionals clarified that that it was not the people of the province of Sulu who questioned the legality of BOL but Governor Sakur Tan II with the support of his father Sakur Tan.

About 1000 Bangsamoro professionals attended the activity from the Civil Society Organizations, youth, academe, and women sector. 

While Bangsamoro stakeholders are anxiously waiting for the decision of the higher court, community residents and some observers in Jolo town noticed that there are about eight 8 barangays in Jolo that are anti-BOL as evidenced by tarpaulins hanged in various corners of the town.

The massages written on the tarps are almost similar, manifesting support to federalism, and opposing the BOL. 

Meanwhile, Former Mayor Hussin U. Amin of Jolo, a member of the Bangsamoro Transition Commission BTC said Federalism is still in the working. “We do not know what federal pattern suited if we are going to shift our government from presidential unitary to federal form of government,” he said.

Amin said R.A. 11054 abolishing the system or structure of governance of the present autonomous region is not abolishing the geographical area of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

He added that the members of the parliament will be elected by the electorate in the new region. While the chief minister and the two deputy ministers will be elected by members of the parliament.

The Sulu Professionals said that the Bangsamoro people fought against the colonizers and oppressors, “because of our religion Islam, homeland, and identity, so let us consider this BOL as our legacy to our children. We will leave ARMM and shift to BARMM”.

They added that peace, security, unity, development can be realized with BOL. They asked their fellow professionals to support the new law.

Atty. Nabil Tan, Undersecretary of OPAPP said, “We are coming to the province of Sulu because we are Tausugs and it is our task and duty to disseminate information on the Bangsamoro Organic Law. And we will give you an idea what is BOL and What is Federalism.”

“The real situation now is we have this BOL, Federalism is still on working,” he added.

“Learning from ARMM… you can’t give something which you don’t have. ARMM is left behind in terms of development compared to other regions. That is why we have this annual block grant automatically appropriated or downloaded to BARMM plus special development fund for the development of the conflict affected areas in the Bangsamoro,” Atty. Tan said.

Atty. Tan said “What will happen if we are not in favor with this BOL ARMM will still be there but ARMM now have more than 200M liabilities Teachers’ remittances to the Government Services Insurance System GSIS.

“The national government now is working to pay or resolve the GSIS teachers’ remittances so that the BARMM could start without liabilities,” Tan added. 

Dr. Tim J. Undain- Sanchez, Schools Division Superintendent, Division of Sulu on the other hand issued a letter dated on October 11, to District Supervisors, School Principals, Districts Secondary Principals, and Teachers in Charge to attend and support the information drive on R.A. 11054 in the Province of Sulu in preparation for the January 21st, 2019 plebiscite.