Duterte still hoping to settle issues with Misuari-led MNLF
COTABATO CITY, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte said on Friday he is still hoping to settle issues with the Nur Misuari-led Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) in the Western part of Mindanao even as he inaugurated the Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) that would serve as an interim government of the expanded autonomous region.
“Maybe in due time, with the prayers of Allah, we can also fix the western part. I hope to talk with our Brother Nur Misuari,” he said. “I pray for success and guidance of Allah in our endeavors,” he added.
Bangsamoro Chief Minister Murad Ebrahim told the President the MILF had already submitted to the President’s office last week the complete list of their combatants and firearms for the first phase of the decommissioning process.
“Today, we are proud to open a new chapter in history as we inaugurate BARMM,” the President said.
He said the new autonomous region would address the historical injustice of the past and plot the new course towards a more promising future for Mindanao and the rest of the country.
The assumption into office of Ebrahim’s group came after a majority of voters ratified the new Muslim homeland in at least five provinces in the former Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) during the Jan. 21 and Feb. 6 plebiscite on the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL), which granted autonomy to the MILF.
The referendum was the final step in a peace pact that MILF signed with Manila four years ago. /ee
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