MANILA - The Bangsamoro Transition Authority is now seeking representation in the anti-terrorism council, its interim chief said Tuesday, less than a week after it asked President Rodrigo Duterte to veto the controversial law.
Al-Hajj Murad Ebrahim last week raised alarms over the anti-terror law's contentious provisions on the definition of terrorism, method of surveillance, and the "power of the anti-terrorism council to order an arrest."
"We issued another statement. We respect the decision of the President and being in the Bangsamoro Transition government, we'll support the implementation of the law. But on the other hand, we are again requesting for the sake of our constituents, na baka pwedeng maging miyembro kami d'yan sa council. At least we can represent our people," he told ANC Tuesday.
(We are again requesting for the sake of our constituents, maybe we can be a member of the council.)
"'Yung mga constituent namin ang very apprehensive. Sila kasi, the experience of our people during the martial law time...tells them there’s danger, risk in this terrorism bill."
(Our constituents are very apprehensive because their experience during martial law tells them there’s danger, risk in this terrorism bill.)
The Bangsamoro government is in contact with the Office of the President and Department of National Defense over the matter, Murad said.
"We are engaging our people now. We have been calling meetings. We see that the remedy we can have is an effective role in the anti-terrorism council. I think that would at least send a message to our people that we still have authority, the chance to defend their rights," he added.
President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday signed the measure into law despite heavy opposition. A day later, 11 protesters against it were arrested in Laguna.