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PNP to admit MILF, MNLF fighter as regular members

Members of the Moro National Liberation Front and Moro Islamic Liberation Front will be admitted to the Philippine National Police under the newly-approved Bangsamoro Organic Law which is hoped to bring lasting and genuine peace in Mindanao.

The BOL, which was finally approved by the congressional bicameral conference committee Wednesday, is expected to be signed ty President Rodrigo Duterte into law before he delivers his third State of the Nation Address later that dah of Jan. 23.

The BOL also provides that age, height and educational attainment qualifications may be waived and can be availed of within five years after the ratification of the BOL.

The BOL, which paves the way for the creation of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao to replace the ARMM, further provides that recruits from the MNLF and MILF have up to 15 years after their entry to fulfil the educational attainment requirement.

Senator Win Gatchalian on Friday commended the MILF and the MNLF for their contributions to making the historic BOL a reality.

“We recognize the sacrifices of the MILF and MNLF and we thank them for their patience and their willingness to set aside political differences for the sake of lasting peace in Mindanao,” he said after the approval of the BOL by the bicameral conference committee.

Gatchalian said the inputs of both groups were vital in making sure the BOL was inclusive and would end all conflict with various secessionist factions.

“The support of both groups for the BOL means there is a greater chance for the new Bangsamoro region to succeed,” he said.

The lawmaker said the BOL will guarantee that the new Bangsamoro political entity will be a fertile ground for investment and inclusive economic development.

“Peace always fosters greater economic development. When there are more economic opportunities, it will be easier for people to rise from poverty and be financially independent,” he said.

The inclusion of the MILF and the MNLF was among the highlights of the BOL as cited by Senate Majority Leader Migz Zubiri, chairperson of the Senate subcommittee on the Bangsamoro Basic Law.

The Senate and the House of Representatives are expected to ratify the BOL during the opening of the Third Regular Session on July 23.

Zubiri also said the block grant involving 5% of the net national internal revenue tax collection of the BIR and the BOC from the third fiscal year immediately preceding the current fiscal year is also among the crucial points in the BOL.

The formula of the block grant, which shall be appropriated and released immediately, will be reviewed five years after the effectivity of the BOL and every five years thereafter.

The Intergovernmental Fiscal Policy Board shall provide for the sharing of the National government and the Bangsamoro in the income of GOCCs in Bangsamoro.

Meanwhile, revenues from the exploration, development, and utilization of natural resources, including mines and minerals shall be granted fully to the Bangsamoro. As to fossil fuels and uranium, the revenues shall be shared equally.

In a text message yesterday, Zubiri clarified that their block grant computation for 2019 is only 60 billion that will likely include the IRA of the other local government units.

Zubiri said another highlight of the BOL involved the teachers in the Madaris schools who will be treated as personnel in special technical positions for which the Civil Service Commission shall set standards for their qualification and appointment.

As it strengthens the Mindanao State University system, the Bangsamoro government shall also establish a Tribal University System. Similarly, the Madaris Educational system, Islamic and Arabic Studies will be established, maintained and supervised by the DepEd, CHED, Tesda and the Bangsamoro Government.

Zubiri noted that on the rehabilitation and development of the Bangsamoro region, he said the livelihood and other needs of members of the MILF/Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Force, the MNLF/Bangsamoro Armed Force, and, their women’s auxiliary forces shall be addressed by rehabilitation, reconstruction and development packages as part of the normalization process.

A Special Development Fund shall be provided by the National government for conflict-affected communities. The 10-year fund is P50 Billion. P5 Billion shall be released annually, for 10 years, starting upon the ratification of the BOL.

Topics: Moro National Liberation Front , Moro Islamic Liberation Front , Bangsamoro Organic Law , Philippine National Police
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