DAVAO City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte said on Sunday that he supports the idea of Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) chair Nur Misuari about a Bangsamoro Republik that will cover the whole Mindanao, including Palawan and Sabah.
“Wala akong problema. I can work under a Muslim leader,” he said in an interview at the sidelines of the Pamulak sa Kadalanan on Sunday. “Ang gusto ko lang it is fair to everybody. Kasi pag hindi fair, ako ang magrerebelde.”
The mayor admitted a long nurtured friendship with Misuari.
“I said I support his legitimate stance. We may not understand with each other yung framework kung hanggang saan, but the fact that he has adopted a stand pursuing legitimate aspiration, it’s something which I support,” the mayor said.
In a national daily, Habib Muhahab Hashim, chairman of the MNLF Islamic Command Council (ICC), said Murshi Ibrahim, Misuari’s chief of staff, had confirmed that Misuari on August 12 declared the independence of the Bangsamoro Republik in Daira, Barangay Lampaya in Talipao, Sulu.
“For all peace and freedom loving people of the world and oppressed Bangsamoro, Salam. For the sake of peace and egalitarian democracy, H.E Prof. Nur Misuari of the Bangsamoro Republik and commander-in-chief of the BAF, has declared the independence of the Bangsamoro Republik in Daira Lampaya, Talipao Autonomous Federated State of Lupah Sug,” Hashim quoted the statement of Ibrahim.
Misuari also designated himself as the commander-in-chief of the Bangsamoro Armed Forces (BAF).
According to Hashim, Ibrahim said the declaration of independence is in line with the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 1514 of 1960 granting independence to all colonized countries.
Ibrahim added that the MNLF faction led by Misuari would pursue its independence only through peaceful and legal means.
Duterte, during the event Sunday, reiterated that he does not want to be against anybody and all he wants is peace.
“Wala untay away. Dili ni madala ug pulbura ug bala if we continue to talk progress,” he said in his five-minute message.
Meanwhile, lawyer V. Emmanuel C. Fontanilla, Misuari’s legal counsel, said the Bangsamoro Republik is eyeing Davao City as capital and seat of government.
When asked of his reaction on this, Duterte said, “It remains to be seen. Hinihingi ko lang that it should be fair, equitable and good for everybody kasi pag hindi kami naman ang mag rerebolusyon dito.”
A 43-second video clip of Duterte’s message taken by the City Information Office during the program, stating his support to Misuari, was uploaded on his official Facebook page and garnered different reactions and comments from netizens.
There are those who are amenable with the statement of the mayor.
Jerson Paulino said: “Kailangan po natin yan mayor alang-alang din sa Mindanao. Kailangan ng katahimikan lalo sa bandang Basilan, kailangan matulungan natin ang mga kapatid natin Muslim.”
Nestor Rubrico Cayetano said that “actually, mas matinong kausap si Misuari keysa sa mga leader nang MILF... FYI.”
“Mudatu pa jud ug maau ang Mindanao kung maka gawas ta sa Maynila.. wala man gud tay Napoles Team (Mindanao will become richer if we are liberated from Manila. It’s because we do not have a Napoles team),” StJames P Mmc said.
Another netizen, Pope Dalisay, said: “All the way mayor, we trust you.”
Paolo Coronel Pascual said, “Kasabot kong lisod ni dawaton sa ordinaryong Dabawenyo pero ayaw dayon mog husga sa desisyon ni mayor kay naa siyay nahibaw-an nga wa pa ta nakabalo (I know this will be difficult to accept for ordinary Dabawenyos but let us not judge the mayor’s decision because he knows something we don’t).”
Meanwhile, there are also those who expressed objection to the decision of Duterte.
Manuel Lizondra said, “Don’t do that mayor. pls.”
“Ang problema hawakan nila buong Mindanao,” Jun Maratas Coraler said.
Wee-Win Manzan, who claimed to be a native of Cotabato City, said it would be unfair for the people who live outside Davao City. “Paano kaming taga Cotabato City na sa unat-una pa na kilala na namin si Nur Misuari sa Cotabato City na nag-lead ng Armm, he failed to reform the Bangsamoro region, at bumalik naman sa dati nyang gawi.”
“Kilala na name po si Nur Misuari sa simula sa pol ang leadership niya at karamihan diro ng mag moron a hindi naniniwala sa leadership ni Misuari. Hindi ko naman pinipersonal si Misuari pero po kilala niyan si Misuari ditto at hindi siya effective maging leader ng lugar or nasyon,” Manzan added.
For Crispin Dante, “Ano nangyari? Bakit mayor? Hindi Ko maintindihan pati kayo susuporta kay Misuari. Isa lang ang naisip kung dahilan kung bakit? Baka galit kayo sa administrasyong Aquino. I'm not sure ha, Hindi kami sang-ayon sa desisyon nyo mayor. Idol pa naman sana kita.”
As of this posting, the video has 23 shares, 329 likes and 78 comments. (ANC)