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MILF NEGOTATING PANEL CHAIR TO LEAD BANGSAMORO TRANSITION PANEL

MANILA, Philippines -  Mohaqher Iqbal, chair of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) negotiating panel, has been appointed by President Benigno Aquino III to lead a 15-member panel that will draft the Bangsamoro Basic Law.
The appointment of Iqbal, as well as seven representatives each from the MILF and the government side in the Bangsamoro Transition Commission was announced late Monday by Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda. 
The Transition Commission (TransCom) has the task of crafting and the Bangsamoro Basic Law that will establish the new institutions that shall serve as the vehicle to realize the aspirations for self-governance of the peoples in the Bangsamoro. 
Iqbal, the appointed chair of the Transition Commission, described his new task as “a big challenge.”
  • The transition panel is largely made up of Muslims. On the part of the Government of the Philippines panel, the seven appointees are: Akmad A. Sakkam, Johaira C. Wahab, Talib A. Benito, Asani S. Tammang, Pedrito A. Eisma, Froilyn T. Mendoza, and Fatmawati T. Salapuddin.
  • Aside from Iqbal, those by the MILF to represent them in the panel are Bobby Alonto, Abdulla U. Camlian, Ibrahim D. Ali, Raissa H. Jajurie, Melanio U. Ulama, Hussein P. Munoz and Said M. Shiek.
  • For her part, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Teresita Quintos Deles stressed that its balanced membership reflects the government’s commitment to inclusivity in the peace process.
  • The TransCom has been given until March to draft the Bangsamoro Basic Law that will be certified urgent by the President and submitted to Congress for passage.
  • “It will undergo a plebiscite in the proposed Bangsamoro core territory as per the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB). Once ratified, the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao is deemed abolished and the new Bangsamoro region will be formally established,” Deles said.
  • Meanwhile the government and MILF negotiating panels resumed Monday the formal talks in Malaysia to discuss the remaining issues on the four annexes of the framework agreement on the Bangsamoro.
  • The 36th formal exploratory talks will try to settle the “remaining unsettled substantive issues” on power-sharing, wealth-sharing, transitional arrangement and modalities, and normalisation.
Source: Agency
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