Duterte signs EO implementing annex of normalization under Bangsamoro
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has signed an executive order (EO) implementing the normalization program under the Bangsamoro peace agreement between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).
Duterte signed EO 79 on April 24, implementing the Annex on Normalization under the 2014 Comprehensive Agreement on Bangsamoro (CAB).
The EO will pave the way for the decommissioning of MILF forces and weapons.
“There is a need to fully implement the various components of the normalization process and capitalize on existing mechanisms and framework under the Annex of Normalization, based on the principle of coordination between the Government of the Philippines and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, and consistent with Republic Act 11054 or the Organic Law for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao,” Duterte said in the EO.
Duterte also created the Inter-Cabinet Cluster Mechanism on Normalization (ICCMN) “to ensure the timely, appropriate and efficient delivery of the Normalization Program.”
“The National Government recognizes that normalization is a process whereby communities can achieve their desired quality of life within a peaceful and deliberative society,” Duterte said.
The EO allowed the government to adopt a Normalization Program that is “multi-faceted and covers the aspects of security, socio-economic development, sustainable livelihood, political participation, confidence-building, and transitional justice and reconciliation.”
The programs under the different components of the normalization program should be “implemented for the combatant and non-combatant elements of the MILF, the families of the decommissioned combatants, and other vulnerable individuals and sectors residing in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).”
The programs will cover recognized MILF camps, particularly Camp Bilal in Lanao del Norte and Lanao del Sur; Camp Omar ibn al-Khattab in Maguindanao; Camp Rajamuda in North Cotabato and Maguindanao; Camp Busrah Somiorang in Lanao del Sur; Camp Badre in Maguindanao; and Camp Abubakar as-Siddique in Maguindanao
Under the security aspect of the order, “the MILF forces and weapons shall undergo a verification, validation, and decommissioning process” to be conducted by the Independent Decommissioning Body (IDB) composed of three foreign experts and four local representatives agreed upon by the government and the MILF.
“The AFP and PNP, along with relevant government agencies, shall work with the normalization bodies in providing routes, convoy and area security during the conduct of the decommissioning of MILF forces and weapons,” Duterte said.
The EO said the National Task Force for the Disbandment of the Private Armed Groups in the Bangsamoro Core Territory and the adjacent Zamboanga Peninsula and Soccsksargen would be in charge of policy, planning and implementation of the program for the disbandment of the private armed groups.
The EO said a program for the reduction and management of small arms and light weapons of individuals and groups would be developed by the JNC, in coordination with the military and the police, consistent with the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act.
The President said the military, through the Department of National Defense (DND), should “prepare a redeployment plan of its units and troops from or within the BARMM, consistent with the progress in the other aspects of the normalization program.”
The EO said the initial funding requirements for the implementation of the EO would be charged against sources to be identified by the budget department. /je
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