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Muslim Filipinos want a new political entity to replace the ARMM — Bangsamoro leader

/ 09:34 PM November 12, 2018

The majority of Muslim Filipinos want a new political entity to replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), a leader of a Bangsamoro organization said on Monday.

Emran Mohamad, president of the Bangsamoro Communication Network Inc. (BCN) and chairman of the Supreme Council of the League of Bangsamoro Organizations (LBO),  said Muslim Filipinos favor the replacement of the ARMM “with a new political entity that would genuinely fulfill the aspirations of the Bangsamoro people.”

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He issued the statement as the plebiscite that will be held in several Muslim communities for the ratification of the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) in January 2019 draws closer.

READ: Comelec sets plebiscite for BOL on Jan. 21, 2019

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The BOL provides for the establishment of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), Mohamad noted.

He noted that the ARMM, established 29 years ago, was widely regarded as a “failed experiment” among Muslims in Mindanao, and maintaining the status quo would be “unacceptable to them.”

“Alam naman po natin na ang status quo ay hindi po katanggap-tanggap para sa maraming mamamayan ng Bangsamoro (We all know that the status quo is not acceptable to the Bangsamoro),” Mohamad said in a radio interview on Saturday.

The plebiscite will be held on January 21 in Muslim communities to determine whether they favor the ratification of the BOL under Republic Act 11054.

The BOL was signed into law by President Rodrigo Duterte on June 26, 2018.

READ: Duterte signs Bangsamoro Organic Law

Mohamad explained that the BARMM “is envisioned as a political entity that would realize the aspirations of the Bangsamoro people for genuine self-determination under a ministerial form of government and ensure autonomy far more than what the present ARMM provides.”

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The new autonomous region is seen by the Bangsamoro people as a solution to problems such as poverty and unstable peace and order situation which the ARMM “failed to address,” he added.

Moreover, Mohamad said  the people of Bangsamoro believe that the implementation of the BOL “will be the key to achieving lasting peace and development in Mindanao.”

“Kaya nga po ito ang taos pusong pagtulong namin sa lahat ng kaya naming itulong na magkaroon ng [BOL], manalo na po ito sa plebisito dahil marami na pong naghirap, marami na pong namatay, marami na pong nasira na mga bagay-bagay na mahal para sa amin,” Mohamad said.

(This is our way of helping implement the BOL. Many have suffered and died for the causes that are important to us.) /ee

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TAGS: ARMM, BARMM, BOL, BOL plebescite, Emran Mohamad, Muslim Filipinos, news, Philippines
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