In Photo- MILF Chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim delivers his message during the kick-off campaign rally at ORG Compound, Cotabato City on December 10, 2018

Kick-Off Campaign for BOL Plebiscite Draws Over a Hundred Thousand participants

Camp Darapanan, Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao — Over a hundred thousand of people from all walks of life rallied behind the ratification of the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) during the kick-off campaign-rally held yesterday (December 10) at the Office of the Regional Governor Compound of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) in Cotabato City. 

The participants most of them wore green t-shirts printed with “Yes to BOL” came from various provinces of Mindanao and cities gladly listened to prominent speakers from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF), Regional Governor Mujiv S, Hataman of ARMM, security sector, religious sector, traditional leaders, and many more.

They all called for a resounding victory in the upcoming plebiscite scheduled on January 21 and February 6, 2019.

MILF Chair Al-Haj Murad Ebrahim narrated the Bangsamoro’s struggle for peace and recognition of their identity as he urged everyone to give BOL a chance to succeed. 

“I don’t think that there will be another law if BOL fails. So I appeal to everyone to be objective in evaluating BOL,” he said.

Government Peace Implementing Panel Chair Undersecretary Nabil A. Tan in his message emphasized the dividends of peace the law will bring to the region, which had been beset by decades of conflict. 

“This is for peace, permanent peace that we have been dreaming of for Mindanao,” Tan said, 

The Chair of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Peace Implementing Panel Mohagher Iqbal, said the law’s inclusive provisions ensure that every sector will benefit in the Bangsamoro region. 

“This is for all. No one will be left behind. This is for all of us,” Iqbal said.

In a message read by Bangsamoro National People’s Congress Chair Muslimin Sema, current MNLF Central Committee Chair Yusop Jikiri urged the Bangsamoro to continue their peaceful efforts towards realization of Bangsamoro aspirations. 

In photo- MNLF National People’s Congress Chair Muslimen Sema delivering a message on behalf of MNLF Chairman Yusoph Jikiri.

“We rewrite the history books to instill in the minds of those that will come after us that the demand for a just, dignified, and lasting peace requires revisiting the past before facing the future,” he said. “We rewrite the history books to end centuries of hatred, mistrust, and injustice that caused and affected the lives of millions of Filipinos.,” Jikiri said in his message read for him by Chairman Sema.

ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman threw his full support for the campaign as he urged the Bangsamoro to participate in the campaign and the plebiscite.

“Let us remember that on January 21, the power is in your hands. The creation of BOL will not be possible without you,” Hataman said.

Fr. Clifford Baira said Christian communities will support the new Bangsamoro Region.

“Our simple formula is to engage the people of the Bangsamoro. Let them be part of the governance in the inclusive quest for peace in Mindanao,” he said.

Representative from the indigenous people Upi Mayor Ramon Piang Sr. gave assurance that the Lumad will step up their campaign for the plebiscite.

Representatives from the youth, traditional leaders, women, and the business community also committed to campaign for the law in their respective communities.

The campaign period for the plebiscite started on December 7 with peace rallies from all over the country including Cotabato City and Manila. It will end on January 19, 2019.