Press Release

UNYPAD Position Paper in support to the Bangsamoro Basic Law

UNYPAD Position Paper on the BBL(29 Oct 2014)

PRESS STATEMENT: MAKE PUBLIC THE BTC-SIGNED BANGSAMORO BASIC LAW; THE PEOPLE, NO LESS, DESERVE TO KNOW

The Mindanao Peoples Caucus along with kindred civil society organizations and grassroots communities in Mindanao strongly urge President Aquino to release to the public the signed BTC version of the Bangsamoro Basic Law and the comments thereon of the Malacanang legal team.

Invoking the acclaimed government policy on transparency and inclusiveness, it is high time that the draft BBL must be released to the public so that all stakeholders for peace will be assured that this remains faithful, compliant and consistent with the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro.

Unhealthy speculations are running high about the fate of the peace road map agreed upon by both the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) in a bid to settle over four decades of Moro rebellion in Mindanao. The longer these speculations persist, the greater the chance of eroding the public’s trust on the GPH-MILF peace process.

To be successful, the peace agreement that the parties forged through a 17-year negotiation must earn the widest public acclaim. We are therefore alarmed that the parties are seemingly doing nothing to stave off the erosion of public confidence on the viability of their political settlement.

We would like to emphasize here that the biggest stakeholders of the peace process are Mindanao’s grassroots communities and peoples who have suffered the most during the long periods of war. Let us not fail their expectations of finally enjoying normalcy in their lives by showing our resolve to defend the gains of the peace process, particularly the integrity of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB).

These unhealthy speculations are bred by the continuing unavailability to public scrutiny of the Bangsamoro Basic Law drafted by the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC). We note that it has been more than two months since the BTC submitted the full text of the draft Basic Law to the Office of the President. And until today, the public is yet to know the contents of this historic document.

When enacted, the Basic Law will serve as charter of the new autonomous entity in Mindanao that expectedly embody the attributes of meaningful self-governance for the Moro people. As such, it will be among the principal measures that will make the letter and spirit of the CAB come to life.

In the process of writing the Basic Law, the BTC asked the public, especially the grassroots communities and sectors, to provide inputs and share their thoughts and sentiments. With the Basic Law now drafted by the BTC, the public deserves to know how much of their hopes and dreams for a fresh social order are embodied in that instrument. In light of this, we appeal to President Aquino to reveal to the public the full text of the Bangsamoro Basic Law.

We feel that enough time has passed for a thorough review of the BTC draft; it is also about time to give the public, especially the Bangsamoro constituency, the opportunity to examine the document. In the spirit of transparency which is the avowed policy of the administration of President Aquino, we urge the BTC to release to the public the text of the Basic Law it drafted. We also urge the Office of the President to immediately release its comments to the BTC’s draft Basic Law even before a ‘revised’ draft is submitted to Congress by July 28.

All these processes must be transparent to all stakeholders in Mindanao and the country. We trust that President Aquino heed this appeal in the greater interest of transparency and of maintaining public trust and confidence in the peace process.

MINDANAO PEOPLES CAUCUS

July 1, 2014

To download a PDF copy please click this link: MPC Press Statement

MEDIA ADVISORY

“Peoples Popular Ratification on Bangsamoro Basic Law; Strongly Appeal to Congress to pass the Bangsamoro Basic Law”

WHAT: Peace Rally in support to BBL 
WHEN: May 4, 2014 (Sunday) @ 9AM to 3PM & May 5 (Monday) @ Batasan, Quezon City

WHERE: Cotabato City Plaza; Tacurong City; Isulan, Sultan Kudarat; General Santos City; Rizal Park, Davao City; Pikit, North Cotabato; Marawi City; Baloi, Lanao; Pagadian City; Zamboanga City; Isabela City; Jolo, Sulu and Tawi Tawi

Contact Persons:
RABY ANGKAL – Spokesman, Mindanao Alliance for Peace (MAP)
Mobile: 0927-622-7719

BOBBY BENITO – Deputy Spokesman for Manila
Mobile: 0917-557-4331

BANGSAMORO YOUTH DECLARATION

BANGSAMORO YOUTH DECLARATION

April 18, 2014

The United Youth for Peace and Development (UNYPAD), Inc. gathered 350 youth leaders from its provincial chapters all over Philippines in its 5th National Assembly held in Poblacion, Pikit, North Cotabato on April 15 – 18, 2014.

With the theme, “Youth Empowerment Towards Establishment of Bangsamoro,” delegates from as far as the National Capital Region, Sulu, Tawi-tawi, Basilan, Zamboanga Peninsula, Bukidnon, Sultan Kudarat, South Cotabato, Sarangani and General Santos (SOCSARGEN), Davao Region, Maguindanao, Ranaw Region, North Cotabato and Cotabato City were convened together primarily to re-assess the relevance of the organization’s programs and thrusts  with the upcoming Bangsamoro Government.

As a youth organization, UNYPAD is cognizant of its important role in the new political entity. Thus, the Assembly unanimously approved a motion for the organization to support the product of the 17-year old peace process between the Government of the Philippines (GPH) and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB).

The four decades of hostilities in Mindanao left not only bloodshed and death. Rather, it pushed the Bangsamoro people farther away from attaining much needed development. The limited number of educated youth of today is an offshoot of oppression done against our ancestors who started our struggle for our right to self-determination (RSD).

As advocate of peace and nonviolent conflict transformation, the UNYPAD believes that the full implementation of the CAB will not only stop the killings but will also correct the injustices perpetrated against the Bangsamoro.   And it will also pave the way toward economic recovery and nation-building. By then, the Bangsamoro can start realizing their legitimate and long overdue demand for a genuine and meaningful autonomy.

With this, the UNYPAD appeals to and call upon all the stakeholders of peace in Mindanao as well as the international community to join hands and support the full implementation of CAB both in letter and spirit.

Particularly, we call upon the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) to do its best in helping facilitate the early submission of the full draft of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) to the Office of the President for the President to submit it to Congress as an urgent bill. So, that, hopefully, by the time the Congress resumes its session in May, it can act upon the same bill immediately.

LET US SUPPORT THE GPH – MILF PEACE PROCESS!  LET US SUPPORT CAB!  LET US SUPPORT THE BANGSAMORO!

UNYPAD 5th General Assembly

Reference Person:

 DATUAN “DATS” MAGON
Vice President for External Affairs
UNYPAD
 
Mobile no.: 0906-2485192
Email: datsmagon@gmail.com

To download the PDF file, please click the link below
BANGSAMORO YOUTH DECLARATION

CSOs’ STATEMENT ON THE ARREST OF USTADZ HADJI WAHID TUNDOK

The painstaking negotiations between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GPH) and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to resolve the Bangsamoro question is at its peak. The people of Mindanao especially in the conflict affected areas have been gratified for seeing the light at the center of the tunnel, which made them hopeful of the possibility of getting out from the darkness of living in a place that has always been attacked by horrific war, which has been viewed by many as a mother of poverty.

This is high time for groups and individuals alike in the country to show their muscles in extending support to the peace efforts advanced by the government and MILF for it is only through negotiations we can address peacefully the conflict in Mindanao that besieged us for decades.

The achievements of the GPH and MILF peace panels are something that should be safeguarded by all of us and we will never give room to the peace saboteurs to sneak them before our eyes as these people have always been thinking of aggrandizement over the sorrow of others.

The Bangsamoro people have never felt secured under this Philippine regime ever since, and their right to self-determination has always been abridged. Human Rights Violations had been taking place left and right. It has been felt that the Bangsamoro have always been treated as second class citizens of the country.

With this unveiled progress in the GPH-MILF peace process under this Aquino regime, the oppressed Bangsamoro saw the hope of getting out from these fires of injustice, discrimination, and bigotry.

The latest incident of attack on Commander Yusop Husaen of the Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Forces (BIAF) of the MILF on February 17 that caused his death, and arrests of Abas G. Andongan February 9, and Ustadz Haji Wahid of the BIAF’s 118 Base Command on February 24, all of 2014 are potential acts that can break the trust and confidence built between the government and MILF as these have been happening amid the negotiations at which there are actually established mechanisms that can be used to address this issue of criminal charges filed against some leaders of the MILF.

In this kind of situation, the Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in Central Mindanao have been worried and they are putting the following calls forward:

  • That the security sector (Philippine National Police which includes Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, Philippine Army and Philippine Marines) should take the lead in protecting the Human Rights of our people, safeguarding the gains of the GPH-MILF peace process and upholding the built trust and confidence between the two negotiating parties;
  • That the MILF and its Armed Forces and Peace Panel to stay sober amid these trials and never give space to evil spirit that hampers the smooth flow of the negotiations, which is now about touch its end, and
  • That the government should exert all efforts to control all its armed forces in the ground particularly the CIDG, Special Action Force, Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Commission and Special Project Mindanao-Khalifa Islamiya to do things that can be detrimental to peace process, and utilize all established mechanisms governing the relationship between the government and MILF.

The CSOs commend the untiring work, candidness and unwavering stand of the 6th ID, PA, Coordinating Committee on Cessation of Hostilities (CCCH) of GPH and MILF, the International Monitoring Team (IMT), and other established mechanisms in delivering and performing their tasks and functions.

Let us never give up in our search for peace. Let us never frustrate our people from their expectation that the negotiators of GPH and MILF will finally bring genuine peace back to them, and finally, let us guard the trust and confidence strongly built between the GPH and MILF.

Reference Persons:

ANWAR Z. SALUWANG
Cellphone No: 09173079048

MAHDIE C. AMELLA
Cellphone No: 09176223970

Press Statement (25 February 2014)

Call for continuing support to the Peace Process beyond the signing of annex on Normalization

call for support

The signing of the annex on normalization is a very important milestone in the on-going GPH-MILF peace process. It is an initial victory of the peace process vis-a-vis the hard bargaining and dragging negotiations. The annex on normalization contains the core roadmap of transforming violence into peace and development.

We at CBCS commend the joint efforts of the GPH and the MILF for their commitment and strong determination to reach a consensus to finally sign the last annex.

We likewise express our most sincere appreciation to those who threw and are continuously extending their all-out-support to the on-going process.

Cognizant of the great challenges ahead, we commit ourselves to accompany the peace process until peace is finally attained in the transition and beyond.

As the negotiation is entering another milestone, we call for all and sundry to sustain their support to the on-going peace process beyond the signing of the annex on normalization.  Lest we forget, there are more challenging steps still ahead. The signing of the annex on normalization paves the way to the job of drafting the content of the comprehensive political agreement which will serve as the basis of the Bangsamoro basic law.

We call upon all the sectors of society to provide the on-going peace process the maximum chance and opportunity to finish the job even as we exercise our democratic rights to be heard.  Let us offer them conducive political climate as they are about to wrap up the peace negotiation justly and rightly to its final conclusion.

We call upon the Bangsamoro, armed and unarmed groups, our political leaders, the religious sector, academe and professionals and the masses to work together in solidarity for the sake of Peace in the Bangsamoro.

The way to human security in the Bangsamoro is the unity and solidarity of the Bangsamoro themselves.

Reference:

Bobby Benito
Spokesperson
CBCS
09266421280

CSO’s Statement in Support to the GPH-MILF Peace Process

Cotabato City
September 11, 2013
 

We, members of the Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) of Central Mindanao, express our strong support to the 40th Exploratory Talks of the Government of the Philippines (GPH) and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). It is our prayer that this round of talks will finally result to the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) which will seal once and for all the political conflict in Mindanao for peace to finally reign in the region.

It is an undeniable fact that only this negotiation can give hope, peace and progress to the oppressed and marginalized peoples of Mindanao who have been suffering from the difficulties of life as a result of the seemingly endless war which has been ravaging our land for a long time. Only this (negotiation) can halt this protracted armed struggle for right to self-determination of the Moro nation.

RESUME THE TALKS, SIGN THE ANNEXES AND CERTIFY THE BANGSAMORO BASIC LAW AS PRIORITY LEGISLATION FOR 16th CONGRESS

6.6.13 photoMINDANAO PEOPLES CAUCUS

Media Statement

June 4, 2013

It is worrisome to note that that up to now, there is still no schedule for the next round of peace talks between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. As stated in its 11 April 2013 Joint Statement, “the parties agreed to meet again after the 13 May 2013 Philippine elections” but did not mention a specific date for the next meeting. It is almost a month from the midterm elections but up to now, there is still no schedule for the formal resumption of talks. Given the very limited transition roadmap between now and 2016, any delay in the signing of the Annexes will cause irreversible consequences on the viability of the transition period itself.