MAKATI CITY—Chairpersons of House committees expressed their support to pass the bills seeking to extend the Bangsamoro transition period from 2022 to 2025.
In a focus group discussion and consultation held Tuesday, Jan. 12, secretaries of House committees holding the said bills stressed their committees are “supportive” to pass the said bills at the committee level.
To date, five (5) bills have been filed at the House of Representatives, seeking to amend section 13 article XVI of the Republic Act 11054, or the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL), and to fix the first regular election of the region.
The bills include House Bill 8116, House Bill 8117, House Bill 8161, House Bill 8222, and House Bill 8277 filed by Representatives Loren Legarda, Esmael “Toto” G. Mangudadatu, Ferdinandh Martin G. Romualdez, Mohammad Khalid Dimaporo, and Isidro Ungab, respectively.
Since their first readings in December 2020, the bills have been referred to Committees on Suffrage and Electoral Reforms being chaired by Representative Juliet Marie De Leon Ferrer; Committee on Muslim Affairs chaired by Representative Ansaruddin Abdul Malik Adiong; and Committee on Peace, Reconciliation and Unity chaired by Representative Esmael G. Mangudadatu.
Representative Mangudadatu noted during Tuesday’s FGD that there is a “need” to extend the transition period of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) to afford both the National Government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) ample time to implement the gains of the peace deals.
“Ang isang buong tatlong taon ay hindi sapat para mailatag lahat ang deliverables ng gobyerno at ilatag ang ano mang dapat ipatupad, ng members ng BTA,” Representative Mangudadtu said.
Debbie Anne Garcia, secretary of the Committee on Suffrage and Electoral Reforms, delivered the message of committee chair Representative Ferrer.
Ferrer noted the focus group discussion will render their legislative work in the Philippine Congress more effective as the advantages and counter arguments were initially discussed.
The committee, in coordination with three other committees, will conduct joint committee deliberations next week after the resumption of sessions on January 18.
“I give you my assurance that House Bills 8116, 8117, 8161, 8222, and 8277 […] will be taken up at the committee level with the welfare of Muslim brothers and sisters at most in mind,” Ferrer added.
The House of Representatives will only have 39 plenary days after the resumption on January 18. (Bangsamoro Information Office)
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