BTC Holds 6th Plenary session amidst BBL deliberations by congress

Cotabato City. January 10, 2018-  Amidst the First Reading in Congress of the draft Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), the Expanded Bangsamoro Transition Commission held its 6th Plenary Session on January 8-9, 2018 at the BTC Session Hall, 4th Fl, Elena V. Co Building, Don Rufino Alonzo St., Cotabato City presided by Chairman Ghazali Jaafar.

Except for Comm. Firdauzi Abbas, twenty (20) commissioners attended the 2-day sessions, and tackled the following agenda, viz a viz : IP'S issues in the proposed core territory ; Report of Commissioner's engagement with the Senate Sub - Committee  on BBL; BTC plan for further engagements with congress for BBL approval, and other matters.  

The BTC Commissioners agreed to create a Multi - Sectoral Task force to study, and make recommendations on all IP issues in the proposed core territory of the Bangsamoro including the recent incident at Mt. Firis that caused havoc among Te'duray communities, and displacement of more than 300 families. 

The BTC commissioners also brought their attention to the chair regarding their observations that there was no proposed bill crafted by the Commission that has been filed in the senate except the versions filed by Senate President Koko Pimentel, and Senator Migs Zubiri.      

It has been argued by the commissioners that they were given a mandate by virtue of their appointment issued and signed by the Office of the President to craft a law for the establishment of the Bangsamoro Government that is inclusive, and based on the 1996 GRP-MNLF Final Peace Agreement, and the GPH – MILF Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) signed on March 24, 2014. 

All these agreements have already been consolidated into one, the Bangsamoro Basic Law crafted by the Expanded BTC.

In conclusion, the BTC commissioners adopted a resolution address to the senate with a cover letter copy furnish the Office of the President the observations made, and request the Senate to sponsor the bill crafted by the Expanded Bangsamoro Transition Commission.