COMMENTARY: My take on Marcos burial and suspension of writ of habeas corpus, as a Moro

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MARAWI CITY (MindaNews/ 19 November) – On Marcos Burial at LNMB:  Some of my friends have been asking why are we silent on Marcos’ Burial at the Libingan Ng Mga Bayani? Here is my take on this issue from a Moro perspective:

It is inarguable that we Moros in Mindanao suffered the most under the Marcos Regime. We lost tens of thousand lives not to mention the trauma and destruction it brought to our families and communities, which to this date “JUSTICE” continues to elude us.

Let me simply put it this way: “it’s not our fight” whether Marcos be buried @ LNMB or not. It is a Disgrace for us to recognize or dignify LNMB as Cemetery for Heroes, most of those buried there from Presidents to the lowest ranking officers were the very people responsible for our sufferings. From the Resettlement of People from Luzon to Mindanao the “Land of Promise” that displaced and rooted us out from our ancestral lands to the recent all-out wars the past few decades. Take for Example Gen. Angelo Reyes who is very prominent in many of the All-out wars launched against us. Do we consider him as Hero?

We have our own way of protesting or expressing our own sentiment against the Marcoses, let us go back to the recently held 2016 Presidential election, Majority of the Voting Filipinos almost delivered Sen. Bong Bong Marcos to the second highest Position the vice presidency, if not for our negative vote he could have been your vice president.

Another is our reservation that Marcos’ burial is being used by interest groups to oust president Duterte, we’ve learned our lesson we don’t want to be part of this conspiracy.

On Duterte’s hinting to suspend writ of habeas corpus to suppress rebellion in Mindanao: Our support to the President is not absolute. I repeat, not absolute, and it remains to be seen in the coming days if he will fulfill what he promised to us or the other way around. We are with him in fighting Drugs and Terrorism. But if I’ll have to offer my criticisms in his campaign: it is his failure to prosecute authorities involved in illegal drugs, like if I may ask, what happened to the Narco-Generals? The Ninja Cops? My observation is that instead of making them pay they are now empowered as if they were given blanket authority to do everything. Illegal drugs will not thrive if not for the involvement of many PNP (Philippine National Police) officers from top to the lowest ranks.  This is a public knowledge.

And on Suppressing Terrorism, how many of those in the AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) colluding with the terrorists were jailed or investigated?  It is written in many books how the AFP and the Government helped in the creation of the Abu Sayyaf from their launching at the “Ipil Siege” to the exposure of Senato Richard Gordon that Abu Sayyaf were taking orders from AFP Generals and in many instances, where the AFP is being suspected. None, I say or white washed if not covered.

But if President Duterte will continue with his plan to suspend writ of habeas corpus to suppress rebellion in Mindanao, we Moros should brace for its impact and equip ourselves with proper knowledge knowing that is is the civilians that will suffer the most. In 2009 PGMA (President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo) and the Congress signed into law RA 9851 criminalizing offenses against Humanitarian Law. Let us utilize this for our survival. And lastly, I hope the present peace tracks that PDuterte will work and unite us Moros to achieve our aspirations for Right to Self Determination, not divide us further as others fear. (MindaViews is the opinion section of MindaNews. Drieza A. Lininding is the Secretary-General of the Bangsamoro National Movement for Peace and Development (BNMPD) and co-founder of the militant youth organization, Free The Bangsamoro Movement)

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