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    Posted January 31, 2014 by

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    Phl president: Draft Bangsamoro basic law

    AS the fighting between government forces and the Muslim rebels continues to rage in Southern Philippines, President Benigno Aquino III on Friday urged the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC) to speed up the drafting of the Bangsamoro Basic Law.
    In a statement, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Teresita Quintos Deles, said the law has to be drafted early to ensure its passage and ratification with enough time to complete the transition tasks in time for the 2016 elections."
    Deles said the President met with BTC members who paid him a courtesy call in Malacanang.
    "The meeting, which took place in a warm and relaxed atmosphere, gave BTC the opportunity to update the President on the work they have been doing and concerns they're trying to address," Deles said.
    BTC is the body created through EO 120 issued in December 2012 to draft Bangsamoro Basic Law that will pave the way for establishment of the Bangsamoro region in 2016.
    It is composed of 15 members appointed by the President - eight recommended by Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and seven recommended by the government.
    "To ensure the broadest possible support for passage of the law, the President stressed need for BTC to be transparent in its work and to reach out to the different sectors, including those initially resistant to the new political entity," Deles said.
    Led by its chair Mohagher Iqbal, who also sits as chief negotiator of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), BTC members have been conducting consultations with various stakeholders.
    Deles said the President "assured BTC of the full support of national government in terms of technical and political support, guidance and advice as well as budget."
    "He (President Aquino) said he would give as much of his own time as necessary to gain support for this undertaking," she pointed out.
    "He expressed full confidence that with everyone's hard work and due diligence, vote for the new law would be won," Deles said.
    Once drafted, BBL will be certified by the President as an urgent bill, submit it to Congress for passage and subjected to a plebiscite in the envisioned Bangsamoro core territory. #
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