Iranun Community Leaders hold Forum in Kapatagan, Lanao Del Sur

 The Local government of Kapatagan, LDS, the Federation of Bangsamoro Civil Society Organization (FBCSO) and the Bangsamoro Communication Network (BCN) Pagilidan sa Iranun Chapter held a community forum with the theme: “Understanding CAB, Federalism and Preventing Terrorism “at the Kapatagan Municipal Gymnasium on January 22, 2017.

More than 700 participants comprising youth and students in both English and Arabic of Kapatagan National High School, Iranun Foundation College and Markaz Abdul Rahman Mahmod Muhammad Zaman and Ma’had Kapatagan attended the program.  Other participants came from adjacent municipalities of Balabagan, Matanog, Barira, and Parang. Some Christian settlers also attended.

The program officially started by a recitation of some verses from the Noble Qur’an by Director Suwaid S. Adame of the MILF-Iranun Provincial Police Force. The welcome address was delivered by Ali Najier M. Dipatuan, ABC-President and also member of the BCN. Former Kapatagan Mayor and former Commissioner of National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) and now Kapatagan Vice Mayor Bai Raida Bansil-Maglangit delivered an inspirational talk.

Nas Pulindao, a peace advocate delved on the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB). He said “The Bangsamoro Problem was not solved because of lack of sincerity on the part of the previous administration of President Ferdinand Marcos by creating two autonomous regions instead of one as agreed in the Tripoli accord of 1976. 

The 1996 Final Peace Accord between the government and the MNLF likewise did not solve the incessant conflict in Mindanao. In 1997, the government entered into a peace negotiation with the MILF with only one agenda: “How to solve the Bangsamoro Question?

“In seventeen years on and off negotiations, the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro  (FAB) was finally signed on 2012 and its four annexes. The CAB was signed in 2014, but the 16th Congress failed to pass the Bangsamoro Basic law (BBL).

“So, what is wrong, if while waiting for the federalism as my good friend Board member Amer Bitor Mindalano Ampaso (2nd district, LDS) claimed to be also as a solution to the nagging Bangsamoro problem, why not pass the BBL?”, said Jun Salik, former Vice Mayor of Upi, Maguindanao, now president of the FBCSO, (an aggrupation of more than 100 POs, cooperatives and associations) asked.


 He cited that many countries in the world that adapted a federal system who are successful. But the question is… which among them we are going to adapt? Now that is still a long process and therefore, the passage of a CAB-compliant BBL is the answer to the Bangsamoro Question.

As Shiekh Abbu Barra, a prominent Islamic scholar who spoke on terrorism said: “Nowhere in the Qur’an where you can find terrorism has been encouraged: Islam has nothing to do with it and strictly abhors any form of terrorism. 

Islam means peace and any idea that runs counter to it is not allowed. Jihad has not been commanded to Muslim. We can live side by side with our Christian brothers or those in the other faith – it was only because of “oppression” that it becomes a criteria to wage this noble act- He challenged the students both Arabic and English to become straight forward to pursue education for the betterment of their lives, families and country “Never succumb to those who are creeping to recruit you to become radicals promising you of money, paradise …. Believe me it will ruin you.

He emphasized that no where you can find in the Qur-an that Islam promotes this idea actually the Shariah, he said strongly command the protection of this five noble goal such as: 1. Protection of life 2. Protection of religion 3. Protection of wealth/ Property 4. Protection of Intellect ( aql) and 5. Nazl. 

He made mention that terrorism cannot be associated with Islam for it totally abhors act that runs counter to peace which is the meaning of Islam. He even advised the student both English and Arabic to concentrate on their education. It is through your education that a better life awaits you”. Never entertain those organizers creeping on you, (if there are such) by joining them…. Much more if this people are among the radicals – It will eventually destroy your life, future, family and your homeland. Support instead the peace process between the Moro Front and the GPH that even international communities are pushing for including peace advocates.

The open forum that followed was facilitated by Vice Mayor Bansil-Maglangit, and the audience was given time to expressed their concerns. A Christian teacher asks “what would be their fate if the CAB be implemented – would they not be marginalized? Were their religious appellations being safe and guaranteed? “.

 It was clearly emphasized to them, that once this enabling law is enacted and ratified, their rights are fully guaranteed and no such coercion in religion. They are free to exercise their creed and/or religion.

After the open forum, statement of support was delivered by Mayor Nhazrudin B. Maglangit “In the name of Kapatagan LGU, we are firmly supporting the Bangsamoro Peace Process”. Commanding Officer Hezron L. Perez, Bravo Company of 6th IB, 6 ID, said, “Our Beloved President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is our Commander in Chief, so we follow his Peace efforts. “Let us hold hand in hand to achieve our aspiration of having lasting peace in the country”.

Chief of Police Inspector Jopy C. Ventura likewise maintained that peace and order must prevail in our homeland.

The closing remark was given by Aleem Nasser Samporna, also a BCN member of Pagilidan sa Iranun Chapter.