3 bills to postpone first BARMM elections
Key House officials have filed three separate bills that would postpone to 2025 of the first elections in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), thus extending the term of its interim government, the Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA), by three years.
“It is very unlikely that they can put everything in place in a very short span of three years,” Maguindanao Rep. Esmael Mangudadatu said in an online hearing on Monday.
“The transition period is inadequate for an effective transition and full realization of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro which was further hampered by the health crisis. This is the reason why I filed House Bill No. 8117 to extend the BTA’s term up to 2025,” added Mangudadatu, chair of the House special committee on peace, reconciliation and unity.
The other bills were filed by House Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda and House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez. All three bills have been referred to different House committees.
According to Mangudadatu, the difficulties and challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic “have made the mandated three-year transitional time frame unrealistic for the national government and the BARMM BTA and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to fully deliver on their respective commitments in the peace agreement.”
He said the postponement of the BARMM elections to 2025 would allow the government, MILF and Moro National Liberation Front to lay better and sturdier foundations and transform “the gains from the peace agreement into lasting and sustainable peace, not only in Mindanao but in the whole Philippines.” INQ
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