Provincial Governor Imelda ‘Angging’ Quibranza-Dimaporo welcomes the Committees on Local Government, Muslim Affairs and the Special Committee on Peace, Reconciliation and Unity of the House of Representatives-17th Congress in the Province of Lanao del Norte, “The Land of Beauty and Bounty,” on March 15, 2018 at Mindanao Civic Center Gymnasium, Municipality of Tubod, Lanao del Norte.

The Governor thanked the Three Committees for coming to hear the sentiments of the constituents of Lanao del Norte through Public Hearing and Consultation on the Proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (House Bill Nos. 92, 6121, 6263, 6475). Governor Angging expressed her personal gratitude to Representative of the Lone District of Tawi-Tawi, Honorable Ruby M. Sahali, Chairperson of the Special Committee on Peace, Reconciliation and Unity, and to Lanao del Sur, 2nd District Representative, Honorable Mauyag ‘Jun’ B. Papandayan, Jr., Committee Chairman on Muslim Affairs, as well as the members of each committee present in the meeting.

The Provincial Chief Executive clearly conveyed in her speech together with 2nd District Representative, Congressman Abdullah ‘Bobby’ Dimakuta Dimaporo and 1st District Representative, Congressman Mohamad Khalid Quibranza Dimaporo as well as the Municipal Mayors of Lanao del Norte are firmly behind the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law and hope for its swift passage.

However, for the inclusion of the 6 Municipalities; Tangkal, Tagoloan, Balo-i, Munai, Nunungan and Pantar in the Bangsamoro Territory should be decided by the voting population of the whole Province in a plebiscite. For these Municipalities are considered buffer zones of Lanao del Norte against any atrocities that may arise in the future, as what have shown in the previous conflicts.

Honorable Abdullah ‘Bobby’ Dimakuta Dimaporo, 2nd District Representative of Lanao del Norte explains that these 6 Municipalities are vital to the interest of peace and development of the province. It helps provide security and stability to the province and the coastal municipalities which are mostly dominated by Christian populace. One example, on August 18, 2008, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front attacked the Municipality of Kolambugan, upon knowing that the Armed Forces of the Philippines are already near, they fled towards the Municipality of Tangkal bringing with them Christian hostages including the wounded. The Municipal Mayor of Tangkal at that time made a moved to block the fleeing MILF members and did not allow them to pass without leaving the hostages. With so much pressure on their shoulders, the MILF agreed to leave the hostages without additional incident. This is what Governor Angging tried to emphasize during her speech that Muslims and Christians in Lanao del Norte harmoniously coexist and protects each other.

1st District Representative, Congressman Mohamad Khalid Quibranza Dimaporo told the people inside the gymnasium that the three Committees of the House of Representatives tasked to formulate legal provisions are earnestly gathering opinions, suggestions and queries directly to the people concern with regards to the proposed BBL.

Lala Municipal Mayor Allan J. Lim, President of the Municipal Mayors League of the Province speaks on behalf of the Mayors of Balo-i and Tagoloan. The Municipality of Balo-i passed Sangguniang Bayan Resolution requesting the two Houses of Congress to conduct a plebiscite in the entire Province of Lanao del Norte to determine whether or not the 6 Municipalities should be included in the periphery of the expanded Bangsamoro territory of the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law. In addition, the Municipality of Tagoloan as well passed a resolution requesting the Bicameral Legislative Body to exclude the Municipality from the proposed expanded Bangsamoro territory.

Sangguniang Panlalawigan Board Member, Honorable Genesis E. Tura, Liga ng mga Barangay President, read the resolution passed by the 18 Barangays of the Municipality of Pantar. The resolution requested both Houses of Congress to exclude its Municipality from the periphery of the expanded Bangsamoro territory under the proposed BBL.

Mayor Joselito Miquiabas of the Municipality of Bacolod supports the stand of the Provincial Government and the two Congressional Districts that the people of the entire Province of Lanao del Norte should be consulted in any decisions that may affect the current situation of the province through application of existing laws of the land.

Mayor Marcos Mamay of Nunungan, one of the 6 Municipalities included in the expanded Bangsamoro territory speaks as elected Local Chief Executive and being the voice of the people of Nunungan, Mayor Mamay calls for the Senate and the House of Representatives to conduct a plebiscite for better understanding and comprehension of the proposed BBL.

Before closing the meeting, Honorable Mohamad Khalid Quibranza Dimaporo said, “I think we are all in agreement that sawa na kami sa gyera (we are all tired of war) and if there is a pact to peace, why not take it. And, you will not find anybody really proposing the Bangsamoro Basic Law. What we want is incorporation of our sentiments, hindi lang sila sa loob nang (not only them within the) ARMM be listened to but also the National Government , The Senate, The Congress and Malacañang will listen to the perspectives of those outside the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao. I hope everybody will respect the product of Congress and the Senate, but most importantly, I hope the BTC or the Bangsamoro or the people inside the ARMM will respect the wish of our President. And, the wish of our President is, as far as the BBL is concern, the AFP will be in full control of the National Government , the PNP will be in full control of the National Government. That will automatically mean amendment in the existing BBL BTC version. Last but not least, when this is all said and done, we have our marching orders that by SONA (State of the Nation), God willing, Insha’Allah, the BBL will be passed. And I hope everybody will respect the output of Congress and Malacañang. Should the BBL be challenge in the Supreme Court, I hope everybody even our brothers inside the ARMM respect the decision of the Supreme Court. When there is a final say, dapat we will respect it all and then move forward towards progress and peace.” PIO-LDN