SENATE okays resetting of BARMM elections

From May 2022 to May 2025, synchronized with the national elections

 September 6, 2021

MANILA – The Senate on Monday approved on third and final reading the bill seeking to reset the first regular elections in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) with a vote of 15-3-1.Senate Bill No. 2214, sponsored by Local Government Committee Chairman Francis Tolentino,… Read More

Ebrahim cites challenges in transition, BARMM accomplishments

During the Chief Minister’s Hour on Wednesday, Chief Minister Ahod “Al-Haj Murad” Ebrahim cited several challenges faced by the interim government throughout the transition period, which root the call for its extension from 2022 to 2025.

“The transitional environment sets some limitations in instituting changes and reforms in the BARMM,” Ebrahim said.

The chief minister noted the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) provided short period for transition. 

“Studies conducted on peace processes all over the world recommend 6 to 10 years of transition period for a post-conflict government to be fully effective and operational,” Ebrahim said.

“The extension is necessary, so that the BTA is afforded sufficient time within which to satisfactorily accomplish its tasks and commitments under the Bangsamoro Organic Law and for the National Government to deliver the pending programs under the normalization process,” he stressed. READ MORE

Bangsamoro Transition Authority to assume ARMM leadership Feb. 26

The Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA), headed by Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) chief Al Haj Murad Ebrahim as chief minister, on Tuesday will assume the leadership of an interim body that will govern the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

bta 1

On Monday afternoon, MILF vice chair for political affairs Ghazali Jaafar, head of the now-defunct Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC), will hand over the leadership of the body to Ebrahim.

The assumption of Ebrahim will be facilitated by the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP). Ebrahim will lead the 80-man BTA whose members took their oath in Malacañang last February 22.

The collegial body is composed of representatives of the MILF and the government, including incumbent officials of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

“As compared to ARMM, the BARMM has wider political powers, including fiscal autonomy,” Murad said in an interview over radio DXMS here Monday.

OPAPP Secretary Carlito Galvez said 12 members of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) were also named members of the BTA and not only five as earlier reported. (PNA)

SAP GO: BOL signals start of peace in Mindanao

Special Assistant to the President Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go expressed hope that the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) will signal the start of lasting peace in Mindanao.

prrdsigning10 (1)

Go made this remark during the ceremonial signing of the BOL on Monday at the Malacañang Palace in the presence of several lawmakers and members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC).

The BOL was signed by President Rodrigo R. Duterte on July 27, 2018, days after it was ratified by the Senate and House of Representatives.

Ang pagpirma ni Pangulong Duterte sa BOL ay nagsisilbing pagsisimula ng katapusan ng kaguluhan at paghihirap sa Mindanao. Ibig sabihin, dito po natin makikita na kung may political will ang president, walang impo-imposible (President Duterte’s signing of the BOL signals the end of war and misery in Mindanao. This means nothing is impossible with a president who has political will),” Go said.

He encouraged all Filipinos to take part in the next steps that the Bangsamoro Organic Law will face.

Under the new law, a plebiscite will be held in the Bangsamoro between 90 and 150 days after its effectivity.

The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) earlier expressed support for Go’s senatorial bid and thanked  President Duterte’s top aide  for his help in facilitating in Congress and the Office of the President the process of approving BOL formerly named Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL).

bong go jaafar

PRRD signs Bangsamoro Organic Law

President Rodrigo R. Duterte on August 6, 2018 signed the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL).


During the ‘69th Araw ng Ipil’ celebration in Zamboanga Sibugay, Duterte said “the BBL has been signed”, referring to Bangsamoro Basic Law which has been renamed into BOL.

“The BBL has been signed but I’m still going back because I have a ceremony with Jaafar and Murad,” said Duterte, referring to Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) first vice chair Ghazali Jaafar and vice chairman for military affairs Al Haj Murad.


Also Read:  Duterte urges Pinoys to join BOL discussionsDuterte urges Pinoys to join BOL discussions

Duterte said he would like also to talk to Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) founding chairman Nur Misuari “so that we can have it by the end of the year”.

The President was supposed to sign the BOL before his third State of the Nation Address (SONA) last Monday but change of leadership in the House of Representatives delayed the ratification of the bicameral conference committee version of the bill.

The House, under the leadership of new House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, ratified the BOL a day after the SONA. Arroyo replaced Pantaleon Alvarez.

The Senate unanimously approved the bicam report on Monday during the opening of the third regular session of the 17th Congress.

The BOL seeks to establish a new Bangsamoro political entity that would replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). (PNA)

Palace to celebrate signing of Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL)


President Rodrigo Roa Duterte will lead a ceremony on Monday, August 6, to mark the passage of the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL), a landmark law that will give meaningful autonomy to the Moro people in Mindanao.

Presidential Peace Adviser Jesus G. Dureza said the ceremony, which comes a little over a week after the President signed the law, symbolizes the major milestone in the Bangsamoro peace process.

“True to his campaign promise, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte has signed the Bangsamoro Organic Law, fulfilling his desire to bring peace in Mindanao,” Dureza said.

“The Bangsamoro Organic Law is an extraordinary law. It is the product of years of peace negotiations with the Moro revolutionary groups and the stakeholders in Mindanao,” he added.


Formerly known as the Bangsamoro Basic Law, the BOL is premised on the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro, a signed peace deal.

The BOL is part of the Duterte administration’s agenda to achieve national reconciliation with the Moro rebel groups. Congress has extensively deliberated on the BOL and made sure that the law is within the bounds of the Constitution, and national sovereignty and territorial integrity, at the same time ensuring that the interests of all sectors are respected.

Dureza said the challenge is now for the country to “work hard to achieve the Bangsamoro Organic Law’s vision to bring peace and development and rectify past injustices to be able to work together in the days ahead.”

This developed as the Central Committee of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) agreed to officially declare its acceptance of the BOL.

MILF Chair Al Haj Murad Ebrahim said since the representatives of all MILF groups had expressed their acceptance of the law during the Bangsamoro Consultative Assembly on July 29 in Camp Darapanan, the Central Committee “held a special meeting on August 1, 2018 and agreed to officially declare its acceptance of the BOL as ratified by both Houses of Congress and signed by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte.”

Nabil Tan, Deputy Presidential Peace Adviser and Chair of the Government Implementing Panel for the GPH-MILF peace accord, said the BOL “should be seen not as a privilege for a few but as the government’s recognition of the Moros’ right to chart their political future through a democratic process as enshrined and guaranteed in the Constitution.”

“The legal framework is now ready, and it is now upon us, the stakeholders – Moros and non-Moros – to put our acts together to make it work,” he said.

Ghazali Jaafar, chair of the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC), described Monday’s event as the beginning of “a better tomorrow” in the Bangsamoro homeland.

“The signing of the Bangsamoro Organic Law by our very own President Rodrigo Roa Duterte paves the way for the coming and establishment of a just and dignified peace in the Moro land. It is a dawn of hope for a better tomorrow. Indeed, it is a beginning of a new chapter in the history of the Moro people in their quest for a better life and progressive community where people are living together harmoniously free from oppression,” he said.

For MILF Implementing Panel Chair Mohagher Iqbal, the event on Monday is the culmination of the more than 17 years of peace negotiations between the government and the MILF.

“As Chair of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front Peace Implementing Panel and member of the Bangsamoro Transition Commission, I consider it a great honor to witness this event, proof of all those years of hard work in name of just and lasting peace in the Bangsamoro and the rest of Mindanao,” he added.

Iqbal also reiterated the fact that the signing of the BOL is “just the beginning. The real challenge lies ahead, or the implementation of the important commitments stipulated in the signed peace agreements, from the establishment of the transition government to the Normalization process.” (OPAPP PR)

Duterte hopes BOL will be ‘implemented right’

duterte bol

President Rodrigo Duterte is keeping his fingers crossed that the newly-signed Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) will be “implemented right” and will pave the way for peace in Mindanao.

Duterte’s remark came a week after he signed last July 26 the BOL, a law that will establish a new Bangsamoro political entity to replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).


PRRD signs Bangsamoro Organic Law

Tapos ko ‘yang BBL (referring to BOL), whether it will be implemented right or not, that’s a story which we have to… it’s still unfolding,” Duterte said in his speech during the inauguration of the Northern Mindanao Wellness and Reintegration Center in Bukidnon on Friday.

“So we’ll just have to keep our fingers crossed and pray to God that Allah might want also to,” he added.

Duterte again reached out to Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) founding chairman Nur Misuari, saying he “trusted” that the leader would not do anything “foolish.”

“Nur is just biding his time. I do not know his real intention. But ako (me) I trust that Nur would not do anything that’s foolish,” Duterte said.

Alam naman niya na ako talaga, surrender ako (He knows I really surrender). I really want peace because even if we want — sabihin ko sa inyo (I tell you) that we are ready and you have everything in place. I do not want to wage a war against my own countrymen,” he added.

Malacañang earlier said Duterte will lead the “ceremonial reenactment of the signing” of the BOL since the President has already signed it.

The Chief Executive was expected to sign the BOL before delivering his State of the Nation Address (SONA) last July 23 but failed to do so.

Only the Senate was able to approve the bicameral report during that day.

The House of Representatives failed to ratify the landmark measure during the opening of the third regular session following a leadership shakeup where former president and Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo replaced Davao del Norte Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez as House Speaker. 




Bangsamoro Organic Law ceremonial signing Aug. 6


Malacañang said that the ceremonial signing of the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) slated on Aug. 6 will be a “re-enactment”.

“There is a ceremonial re-enactment of the signing of the BOL on Aug. 6 at 3:45 p.m.,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a Palace briefing.

Roque earlier announced that President Rodrigo Duterte has already signed the BOL last July 26, two days after the House of Representatives ratified its bicameral report on the BOL.

Duterte was supposed to sign the BOL during his State of the Nation Address (SONA) on July 23 but failed to do so since it was only the Senate that was able to approve the bicameral report.

PRRD signs Bangsamoro Organic Law


The lower chamber failed to ratify the landmark measure during the opening of the third regular session following a leadership shakeup.

“Re-enactment lang ‘yun. ‘Yan ‘yung seremonya (It’s just a re-enactment. That will be the ceremony) that we were deprived of kasi (because) the ceremony was supposed to be in Congress itself,” Roque said.

He said that authors, and stakeholders, including the Bangsamoro Transition Committee (BTC), of the landmark measure will be invited during the event.

On Monday, Roque said that Duterte is “not really fond of” holding ceremonies, although he personally felt that the BOL deserves one.

“Alam ninyo si Presidente talaga, hindi mahilig sa seremonya (You know, the President, he’s not really fond of holding ceremonies),” Roque said in an earlier briefing.

He said if the administration of former President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III held a ceremony for the signing of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) despite it not being passed by Congress, the Duterte administration’s BOL certainly deserves a ceremony as well.

On Monday, Duterte’s top aide, Christopher “Bong” Go confirmed that a ceremonial signing will be held in Malacañang.

The BOL, which seeks to establish a new Bangsamoro political entity to replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), is expected to pave the way for lasting peace in Mindanao. 

Also Read:  Moro people back BOL, hope law brings genuine peace



BOL ASSEMBLY. Thousands of Bangsamoro people gather on Sunday (July 29, 2018) at Camp Darapanan, the main camp of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front in Barangay Simuay, Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao, to signify their support to the Bangsamoro Organic Law signed by President Rodrigo Duterte last week. (Photo courtesy of the MILF Media Communications Group)


DUTERTE’S SONA: State of chaos



By Cebu Daily News

We have no indication from the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte that it is seeking redemption. But if it is, it should start with nothing less than an honest report today about the state of the nation.

sona xThe State of the Nation Address (Sona) is normally an occasion for the President to trumpet his achievements in the past year.

While we expect President Duterte to deliver a progress report, we would be shortchanged if he fails to say a word about the many setbacks we have suffered under his watch.

If he uses the Sona pulpit as a mere stage for pitching his plan to change the Constitution to pave the way to a federal form of government, he would be in no position to blame critics who would take him to task for ignoring emergencies.

For it is not with the promise of an altered form of government that we, the people, will gauge the performance of Duterte in his recently concluded second year in office.

Neither will we judge his presidency’s second year on semiotics from the Sona live feed under the direction of Joyce Bernal or on the tired presidential expletives that will entertain only true-blue Duterte junkies.

China is already administering otherwise sovereign Philippine territory in the West Philippine Sea. Our Moro brothers and sisters feel disadvantaged, their neighbors confused in the version of the Bangsamoro Basic Law that is among Duterte’s advocacies.

The President should answer for threats to our territorial integrity. At least 5,000 people have been killed by police in the crackdown against illegal narcotics. At least 23,000 potentially drug-related deaths are under investigation. Lumads are being killed, injured, and displaced in military operations. Killing has replaced due process of law in crimefighting and has not spared innocents like Cebu’s Bladen Skyler Abatayo, 4. The President should answer for violence against citizens at the hands of the State.

Unemployment remains above 5 percent. That translates to at least five million Filipinos without jobs. Prices of commodities are skyrocketing. The peso is now the weakest currency in Southeast Asia. The number of Filipinos who describe themselves as poor has increased.

Our national debt has ballooned and the government plans to borrow some more. The President should answer for economic conditions that are inimical to the common good. Corruption has plagued the executive department to little consequence.

As of June 28, of the government executives sacked under the Duterte administration over corruption or misconduct allegations, 20 have not been sued, four have been reappointed, and one was retained in government. The Commission on Audit has flagged billions of pesos in misspent public money at the tourism department and millions in unliquidated cash advances under the Office of the President.

The President should answer for corruption in his official family. The people will not be fooled. Presidential silence on the issues we raised, amid a pliant Senate, Lower House, and Supreme Court will reek of an unhinged leadership out of tune with the true democratic sovereign, drunk on its indulgence of its authoritarian fetishes.

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ARMM’s Governor Hataman hails approval of BBL

Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Governor Mujiv Hataman lauded Friday the bicameral approval of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) on Wednesday night.

The consolidated version of the bill still awaits President Rodrigo Duterte’s signature, which is expected before he delivers his third State of the Nation Address on Monday, July 23. The President has earlier certified the BBL proposal as urgent.

The BBL is a measure proposing for the establishment of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao that would replace the old ARMM set up.

“Despite the difficult obstacles we have had to overcome together in the hopes of not only reforming but rebirthing an institution that represents our people, we are now closer than ever to have a regional government that is reflective of our times and is responsive to the most urgent needs of the Bangsamoro,” the governor said in a statement.

He said that more than being a law set on paper, “this new organic law is now a piece of our history — one that speaks of our struggle as we assert our rights as a people.”

Hataman said that to fully realize the peace and development for the Bangsamoro, the law must be upheld always in favor of those oppressed and marginalized.

“Let us not cease being vigilant. Let us continue the good work that we have started, and make sure that this law will exist not just as mere words on paper, but as a covenant of peace held close to the hearts of our people,” he said.

Hataman has vowed to step down from his post once the new Bangsamoro regional government takes into effect. (PNA)