Peace panels sign roadmap for proposed Bangsamoro region-A A +A
Thursday, February 28, 2013
MANILA -- Representatives from the Philippine Government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) signed late Wednesday one of the four annexes to the framework agreement on the Bangsamoro in a meeting in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Resolved on that day was the annex on transitional arrangements and modalities, which details the roadmap towards the creation of the region once a final agreement is reached this year.
"We actually had a draft as early as December and finally now we are signing it. Resolutions of issues on wealth-sharing also took a long time but here we are - they’ve been solved, we found the language," said government peace panel chair Miriam Coronel-Ferrer.
Both panels also continued discussions on the annexes on wealth-sharing and power-sharing and resolved most of the remaining issues, according to a statement released by the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process.
Also tackled in the negotiating table was the composition of the Third Party Monitoring Team that will review, assess, evaluate and monitor the implementation of the FAB and its annexes.
The Technical Working Group on Normalization likewise had discussions on the normalization annex and took charge of refining the terms of reference on the policing review body that was drafted by Kristian Herbolzheimer, who sits in the International Contact Group.
Lastly, the parties signed the TOR for the Independent Commission on Policing (ICP). The ICP will submit recommendations to the peace panels on the appropriate form, structures and relationships of the police force for the Bangsamoro.
"So we're halfway through that Heartbreak Hill and soon we will finish the marathon. And after the marathon, of course, there will be another marathon. So it's not goodbye, it's still hello to everyone," said Ferrer, referring to the difficult lap in the famous Boston Marathon in the United States.
Meanwhile, MILF peace panel chairman Mohagher Iqbal said the 15-man Transition Commission, which he heads has only one year and 10 months to do its task of crafting the Bangsamoro Basic Law.
The draft bill will be certified urgent by President Benigno Aquino III and passed by Congress before undergoing a plebiscite in the proposed territory of the Bangsamoro region.
Once ratified, Bangsamoro will replace the decades-old Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (Armm). (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)