Bangsamoro deal unconstitutional, MNLF claims

By Albashir Saiden, ABS-CBN News Central Mindanao

Posted at Dec 10 2013 10:40 PM | Updated as of Dec 11 2013 06:40 AM

COTABATO CITY -- Two days after the signing of the power-sharing annex of the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB), Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) Chairman Muslimin Sema said creating a ministerial form of government is unconstitutional.

"Masaya tayo para sa GPH (government of the Philippines) at MILF (Moro Islamic Liberation Front) pero ang pagtatatag ng ministerial form of government ay labag sa batas natin. Kung titingnan ang 1987 Constitution, dapat unitary form of government," Sema said.

Sema said a ministerial form of government was also presented on the 1976 Tripoli Agreement, but since it is against the law, they chose not to continue it.

"Ganito rin ang nangyari sa 1976 Tripoli Agreement, ministerial form din, pero dahil hindi tugma sa konstitusyon hindi na lang itinuloy," he said.

After reading the recently signed power sharing annex of the FAB, Sema said it makes no sense, noting that everything in it is the same with the 1996 final peace agreement.

"Pareho lang ang laman. Kung titingnan ng mabuti, parang walang sense. Ang tapos na sana, inulit na naman, ililipat lang sa ibang papel tapos idadaan na naman sa mahabang proseso," he added.

Meanwhile, GPH chief negotiator Miriam Coronel-Ferrer said what Sema stated is not true.

Ferrer said there are lots of changes and differences between the 1996 final peace agreement and the FAB in terms of governance and jurisdiction.

"Maraming bagay ang nabago. Una, dun sa usapin ng jurisdiction sa ilang aspeto ng natural resources may significant changes. Ang Bangsamoro makakalahok sa pag-determine, exploration, development at restoration of minerals at energy resources. Hindi malinaw yan sa RA 9054 at 1996 final peace agreement," Ferrer said.

She also said having a ministerial form of government is not against the 1987 Constitution.

"Hindi yan totoo. Ang nakalagay sa 1987 Constitution ay yung autonomous government will define a structure of government. Kung babasahin lahat, nasa Article 10 ng Constitution yan, at ang nakalagay lang doon dapat ay elected ang executive at legislative bodies para matiyak pa rin ang democracy," she explained.

Meanwhile, the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighter (BIFF) does not seem to care on the matter.

BIFF spokesperson Abu Missry Mama said they do not support nor oppose the FAB, but they are open for a separate dialogue for an everlasting peace.

"Yan naman talaga ang gusto natin eh, kapayapaan para sa Mindanao, hindi naman tayo kontra diyan," Mama said.