THIS is the third year since we remember the sacrifices made by the 44 members of the police Special Action Forces who lost their lives in an encounter with insurgents in Mamasapano, Maguindanao. Their demise would be known not only tragic, but perhaps one of the lowest point in modern Philippine history.
The result caused racial and religious divide, bred discrimination, and significantly affected the achievement of peace in Mindanao. It appeared that time, there were mystic hands behind that unfortunate event to hinder a bigger historical landmark: the passage of Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL).
No doubt BBL was affected by what happened to the death of SAF-44. At some point, some accusations were a bit unfair but the majority sentiment was anger and cry for justice and vengeance. A little tip of the scale and it would result to a civil unrest, worse, civil war.
Three years later, and we may see a glimmer of hope. Former president Benigno Aquino III was charged along with his police generals that time due to negligence and command responsibility. Meanwhile, a new BBL draft is now being pressed in the Congress.
The new BBL draft may face some objections but not as rabid compared the last time. Hope is strong, given of what had happened to Marawi City and the new administration's move for Federalism.
We hope that it will not take a long time for justice to be given by the fallen heroes, and self determination and liberty to the Bangsamoro people. The SAF 44 incident was a painful lesson for the whole nation, and as a realization that we still hold biases and immaturity on every spectrum of peace process and politics.