Aquino to form citizens’ conclave on peace agreement, say sources | Inquirer News

Aquino to form citizens’ conclave on peace agreement, say sources

By: - Reporter / @NikkoDizonINQ
/ 12:25 PM March 27, 2015

President Benigno Aquino III    INQUIRER PHOTO/RAFFY LERMA

President Benigno Aquino III       INQUIRER PHOTO/RAFFY LERMA

President Benigno Aquino III will announce Friday afternoon the creation of a council of leaders from seven sectors of society, including the Catholic Church, whose task would be helping the public understand the peace agreement between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), the Inquirer learned from well-placed sources.

Malacañang announced that Aquino would address the nation 2 p.m. Friday to mark the first anniversary of the signing of the historic Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB).


READ: Facts about the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro


The significance of the day, however, has been overshadowed by the encounter between Special Action Force (SAF) commandos and MILF rebels in Mamasapano, Maguindanao two months ago, as a result of an uncoordinated police counterterrorism operation against Malaysian terrorists Zulkifli bin Hir alias Marwan and Amin Baco and their Filipino cohort, Basit Usman.

Palace insiders, in separate interviews, told the Inquirer that in his speech, President Aquino would name the seven recognized leaders of society who would convene a “citizens’ conclave.”

The conclave would come up with methods how to make the public have a deeper and broader understanding of the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL).

READ: BBL is in ‘coma,’ says Marcos

One of the Inquirer sources said that Manila Archbishop Luis Cardinal Tagle would be one of the convenors of the conclave.

The draft BBL has been disparaged by lawmakers, including those that initially endorsed it like Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano, because of its supposed unconstitutionality and being lopsided in favor of the MILF.


READ: Bangsamoro law support in Congress suffers setback

The BBL is the key piece of legislation that needs to be passed for the creation of a Bangsamoro autonomous region, described as the realization of the Moro people’s desire for self-determination.

The MILF has been blamed for the bloodbath but the rebel group had said its men only defended themselves, not knowing that there was a police operation in their area.

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The Mamasapano debacle left dead 44 SAF commandos, 17 rebels, and five civilians, including a young girl. ID

TAGS: BBL, Mamasapano, MILF, peace, SAF, SAF 44, understanding

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