Sulu CSOs call for passage of CAB-Compliant BBL

Members of various civil society organizations in Sulu are pushing for the enactment of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), saying this will answer their long-drawn aspirations for peace in Mindanao.

In an online article posted on Peace.Gov.Ph, the official website of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP), Prof. Sahir Udja of the Mindanao State University said, “We are pushing for the passage of the BBL because we are (longing) for a genuine peace.

Udja’s statement was made during an information and education campaign on the BBL on Wednesday, February 7, 2018 in Jolo, the capital town of Sulu.

Udja said provisions of the new version of the BBL, drafted by the 21-member Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC), encompasses all the agreed peace agreement between the government and the Moro fronts.

Al-Khalifa Jilah of the Consortium of Bangsamoro Civil Society said that the creation of the Bangsamoro government will shore up the economic conditions of the people of Sulu.

“Because peace and order will be addressed especially in the island province,” he said in vernacular.

“We are calling for the members of Congress and Senate to be sincere in the peace process and pass the BBL,” Jilah said.

For her part, Rohana Elias of the Kapatud Bangsamoro said there is a need to pass the BBL for the needed change in Moro-dominated areas in Mindanao.

“This is for the future of the youth,” she said, adding that “we will actively campaign for the passage of the BBL.”

According to Jilah, people in the proposed territories should educate themselves about the proposed law.

“We see the need to do more information and education campaign on the BBL in the grassroots level to help them in the decision-making process,” he said.

Jerry Marrakech of the Sulu Alliance for Peace and Environment said the BBL addresses the perennial problem of encroachment of industrial fishing fleets over their fishing grounds.

“The BBL gives the importance of environmental issues especially in the Bangsamoro waters,” he said.

Both houses of Congress target to pass the BBL by March and conduct the plebiscite mid-year in the proposed territories.

Once enacted into law, the BBL will entrench a new political entity called Bangsamoro Region.

Presidential Peace Adviser Jesus G. Dureza urged civil society groups to spread the word about the BBL.

“In your own way, help us explain the content of the BBL in your communities,” he said. (Source: Peace.Gov.Ph)