Iqbal: peace no matter what happens to BBL

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CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (MindaNews / 25 March) —  “The MILF will not disengage from the peace process no matter what will happen to that Bangsamoro Basic Law,” Mohagher Iqbal, chair of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) said in an interfaith forum here Wednesday.

Iqbal said the MILF will pursue the passage of the Bangsamoro Law beyond the term of President Benigno Aquino if it is not passed by the present Congress.

He assured an audience led by Cagayan de Oro Archbishop Antonio Ledesma and leaders of interfaith NGOs that the MILF will continue to engage the Philippine government “peacefully even if Congress scuttles the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law.”

FOR BBL. MILF peace panel chair Mohagher Iqbal speaks before priests, nuns and NGO leaders during the “Peace Conversations” held at the Archbishop’s Residence in Cagayan de Oro on Wednesday, March 25, 2015. Iqbal arrived here Wednesday to receive Xavier University’s Father Masterson Award bestowed on him and government peace panel chair  Miriam Coronel-Ferrer for contributions to social development. MindaNews photo by Froilan Gallardo
FOR BBL. MILF peace panel chair Mohagher Iqbal speaks before priests, nuns and NGO leaders during the “Peace Conversations” held at the Archbishop’s Residence in Cagayan de Oro on Wednesday, March 25, 2015. Iqbal arrived here Wednesday to receive Xavier University’s Father Masterson Award bestowed on him and government peace panel chair Miriam Coronel-Ferrer for contributions to social development. MindaNews photo by Froilan Gallardo

Iqbal arrived here Wednesday, a day earlier than his scheduled appearance at the Xavier University graduation where he and government chief negotiator Miriam Coronel-Ferrer will receive the Fr. William Masterson SJ award for their contribution to social development.

He met with Ledesma and NGO leaders for three hours during the “Peace Conversations” organized by Tulay sa Kalinaw Mindanaw and Balay Mindanaw at the Archbishop’s Residence in Cagayan de Oro.

Iqbal said the MILF is facing three scenarios in Congress after the January 25 Mamasapano tragedy where 67 persons were killed – 44 from the Philippine National Police Special Action Force (PNP-SAF), 17 from the MILF (18 in their initial reports but 17 in the report of the MILF’s Special Investigative Commission) and five civilians.

He said the first scenario would be for the Philippine Congress to pass the BBL as it is without cuts and revisions. “That would be the good BBL and good for us,“ Iqbal said.

A second scenario which would be a disaster for the MILF, Iqbal said is for Congress to pass the BBL with so much cuts and revisions that it would leave “nothing to imagine.”

“This is the scenario that we fear most because a watered down BBL will not solve the Bangsamoro problem,” Iqbal said.

The third and last scenario, Iqbal said is that Congress will not pass the BBL at all.

“We would rather like this because we can engage the next administration for the passage of the BBL,” he said.

Iqbal’s meeting with Ledesma and NGO leaders came as a surprise for many especially since the alumni of Xavier University had vehemently opposed to the idea of awarding him and Ferrer.

Prof. Rudy Rodil, a former government peace negotiator said the problem was the deep mistrust between the Christian majority and the Muslim minority.

Rodil said the roots of this animosity can be traced to history when the Spanish conquistadores and  Americans played the different tribes against each other in order to colonize the Philippines.

“That’s why every time there’s a major incident, we see an uproar from the Christian majority, “ Rodil said.

Iqbal also answered questions on indigenous people’s rights within the Bangsamoro, landownership and other issues during the talk.

“I was surprised that Mr. Iqbal does not look like a combatant. I am so excited to meet him,” Msgr. Rey Manual Monsanto said. (Froilan Gallardo / MindaNews)

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12 COMMENTS

  1. Quote”We should not be fatalistic on our approach to the BBL. Yes MILF said that if the BBL is not pass as what they wanted it, it will be resumption of war? War mongers and war freaks will try to intimidate and strike fears amongst us, our countrymen, but do not take it at its face value. Certainly MILF is playing a mind game or trying to bluff our congressmen and senators who are in the midst of reviewing the provisions of the BBL but after the Mamasapano incident, we have to be honest to ourselves, the legislatures are minutely reviewing all the provisions of the BBL just to make sure that they will not be part of a complete sell out of the BangsaMoro hinterlands to the MILF. For sure, our AFP and PNP forces are quite aware of what will be the dire consequences if they will not prepare for the worst, but believe you & me, we are all Filipino and whether Christians, Muslims or atheists, we have to work to resolve this critical issue that will affect all of us. For our peaceful loving Muslim brothers of Muslim Mindanao who have seen and suffered the previous horrors of war, it is all our responsibilities that war will be won without firing any shots that can maim and kill our brothers but rather the animosity of all stake holders will be contained in the negotiating table where all the issues of pro and against the BBL that will be passed by congress can be arrived at peacefully or even with a lot of tongue lashings but at the end the animosity remain in the negotiating table and do not propagate in the cities, towns, hinterlands and jungles of Muslim Mindanao. “Unquote.

  2. Quote”We should not be fatalistic on our approach to the BBL. Yes MILF said that if the BBL is not pass as what they wanted it, it will be resumption of war? War mongers and war freaks will try to intimidate and strike fears amongst us, our countrymen, but do not take it at its face value. Certainly MILF is playing a mind game or trying to bluff our congressmen and senators who are in the midst of reviewing the provisions of the BBL but after the Mamasapano incident, we have to be honest to ourselves, the legislatures are minutely reviewing all the provisions of the BBL just to make sure that they will not be part of a complete sell out of the BangsaMoro hinterlands to the MILF. For sure, our AFP and PNP forces are quite aware of what will be the dire consequences if they will not prepare for the worst, but believe you & me, we are all Filipino and whether Christians, Muslims or atheists, we have to work to resolve this critical issue that will affect all of us. For our peaceful loving Muslim brothers of Muslim Mindanao who have seen and suffered the previous horrors of war, it is all our responsibilities that war will be won without firing any shots that can maim and kill our brothers but rather the animosity of all stake holders will be contained in the negotiating table where all the issues of pro and against the BBL that will be passed by congress can be arrived at peacefully or even with a lot of tongue lashings but at the end the animosity remain in the negotiating table and do not propagate in the cities, towns, hinterlands and jungles of Muslim Mindanao. “Unquote.

    • MILF and BBL are the same coin. Only if moslems denounce the Koran and hadith for what they are; commands and incitement to murder and enslave unbelievers, until there are no unbelievers”, from a deranged mass murdering rapist paedophile they revere as a holy man.
      Moslems bring on their own violence. we are seeing it all over the world today. 97% of armed conflict is being committed by moslems. well over 500million have been slaughtered thru the centuries by jihad massacre and genocide. Mindanao is just a small part of their bigger agenda to take the world back to the stone age.
      The only way there will be peace is if islam is exterminated or all moslems denounce the Koran and cease obeying all the 100s of murderous commands contained in it.

    • MILF and BBL are the same coin. Only if moslems denounce the Koran and hadith for what they are; commands and incitement to murder and enslave unbelievers, until there are no unbelievers”, from a deranged mass murdering rapist paedophile they revere as a holy man.
      Moslems bring on their own violence. we are seeing it all over the world today. 97% of armed conflict is being committed by moslems. well over 500million have been slaughtered thru the centuries by jihad massacre and genocide. Mindanao is just a small part of their bigger agenda to take the world back to the stone age.
      The only way there will be peace is if islam is exterminated or all moslems denounce the Koran and cease obeying all the 100s of murderous commands contained in it.

      • Indeed you are a friend of Mindanao and I enjoin you to have a hard earned vacation in the land of the free so you can see for yourself what is the situation on the ground and how your friends in Mindanao are reacting to what you are saying.

  3. NO TO BBL!!!! taga mindanao din ako. kung gyera ang gusto ng mga rebelde sasama ako sa mga sundalo bigyan lng ako ng armas! Ipaglaban ko ang mindanao! yabang ng mga tamad na rebelde!

  4. MY ULTIMATE RECOMMENDATION is to replace the GPH Secretary of Peace Process Teresita Deles with someone loyal to the government, replace the GPH negotiator Ferrer with someone loyal to the government, include a consultant MNLF in the GPH peace panel, scrap the BBL, remove Malaysia as peace process broker and replace it with a local civilian peace-advocate organization, and re-open a fresh talks after conducting formal due-diligence (personal background check) on the leaders and negotiators of the MILF to ensure frauds are disqualified. Considering the adamant character of PNoy, if he is not ousted, then we wait for these recommendation to be followed in next administration. (John R. Petalcorin, MNLF Director for Communications)

  5. Muslim Moro can’t be trusted. Islam teach them to do Taqiya and Kitman. They are natural deceivers and Traitors. They call us Kafir and they will force their Sharia law to us. They don’t see themselves as Filipino. They should all be deported to Malaysia.
    One Philippines! One constitution! No to Sharia Law! No to BBL!

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