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Lanao Sultan: MNLF, MILF won’t go to war if BBL not passed, but…

By: - Reporter / @MAgerINQ
/ 02:36 PM January 23, 2018

The Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) will not go to war even if the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) fails to get the approval of Congress.

Firdausi Ismail Abbas, the sultan of Lanao and a member of the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC), gave this assurance on Tuesday during a joint hearing in the Senate on the BBL, which seeks to establish a new autonomous Muslim region in Mindanao.

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“We’re very thankful that the honorable senators are doing everything to see to it that this law will be passed. And there’s nothing from us, no statement could you ever expect that if this law will not be passed, there will be war,” Abbas said.

“Definitely, the MNLF will not go to war. Most of us are already old. The MILF neither will go to war,” he also said.

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But Abbas warned of other groups that he said might take advantage if the BLL would not be approved by Congress.

Firdausi Ismail Abbas, the sultan of Lanao and a member of the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC)

He cited as example the Abu Sayyaf Group, which he said emerged out of their frustration with the MNLF; and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF), which he said came about because of their disagreements with the MILF negotiations with the government.

“So these are things, the persons, the groups that will take advantage of the situation if this law will not be passed,” Abbas noted.

Abbas assured that the BBL that the BTC is proposing would be subject to the scrutiny of Congress as it would be given power to amend the law.

“There’s nothing to worry. We’re trying to build nationhood. But we can’t build it without trust. We can’t build without sincerity. For as long as you don’t trust us, nothing would come out of it,” he said.

“A strong nation is not borne out by a mere fiat of law. It must be our attitude towards each other, respect for each other’s cultures and customs.”

Abbas admitted that the law may not be perfect, but he hopes that Congress could help thresh out its “deficiencies.”    /kga

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TAGS: abu sayyaf, Bangsamoro, BBL, biff, Firdausi Abbas, MILF, Mindanao, MNLF
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