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Mindanao Autonomy: From MNLF to MILF

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The sizzling isssue in Basilan – Sulu – Tawi-Tawi (BASULTA) frontiers is the postponement of the ARMM election. Many residents in this area are in favor of the postponement of the election and the tenure of the incumbent elective officials shall have to end before year 2011 and bid farewell.

In fact, so many Muslim lay leaders and intellectuals in these three provinces are clamoring for the abolition of trhe ARMM. Governance in the ARMM did not fare so well. It failed to meet the desire, the aspiration and satisfaction of the people.

ARMM is a political fiasco. It failed in its performance instead, become an icon of graft anf corruption. Its governance has been the great embarrasment among the Muslim political leaders. The infamous Maguindanao massacre has set a tone of political terrorism, a classical example of bad governance in the hands of leaders who are supposed to give righteous and upright regional government.

From faraway Tawi-Tawi, a friend and former government employee now a retiree, Habib KIRAM H. KAMALUDDIN, Secretary General of the MoroNational People’s Congress, share his views and opinion on some current issues. Some of his views are printed herein to quote:

“Records show, the current Undersecretary of the Presidential Adviser on Peace Process, Commander Dimasangcay A. Pundato, F1-Batch 90 of the MNLF Cadre Officer and Chairman of the MILF Reformist was the first MNLF leader who was prepared and ready to accept Muslim Autonomy offered by then President Corazon C. Aquino, who was installed to the Presidency in 1986 through Edsa People’s Power Revolution. From a foreighn country, and at the behest of “Peace and Reconciliation”, Dimasangcay A. Pundato escorted by two of his trusted Aides flew via Philippine Airline to Manila on July 14, 1987. They returned “Incognito”, without publicity and was met at the Manila International Airport by the company of a Catholic group headed by Christopher Carreon. Guided by the Command of Allah to Prophet Mohammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Be Upon Him), which states: “Oh Mohammad, if the Enemy Calls for Peace, Accept it, And If They Turn Traitor, Leave it to Me. “That time, he was assured by the late Senator Ninoy S. Aquino in one of their encounters in Malaysia, that Muslim Autonomy shall granted once an Aquino will become President of the Philippines.
Patient enough, the Muslim Autonomy was awarded to others despite Pundato was the exponent to accept it. He was instead made to head the Office on Muslim Affairs twice but the Regional Governorship remain a promise! The ARMM remaind the poorest of the poor in the Region.  This is due to tacit corruptions and mismanagement. There should be a way out of the ambit of greed and lust for power.  Likewise, there must be a break for good men to do something through the straight path, the path of lasting peace and tranquility.

To put Mr. Pundato in the forefront of the Regional Government is very much consistent with the mandate of the Organization of the Islamic Conference. He is known and recognized as the Chairman of the Unity Committee, tasked to unite the Salamat Faction, the BMO and all other factions of the MNLF. He is widely acceptable in the grassroot level even outside of the ARMM and therefore, a great stabilizer, honored and respected.

Sa daan na matuwid, GRP – MNLF Accord should be held in high esteem, accorded respect and given justice by His Excellency, BENIGNO SIMEON C. AQUINO III, in memory of her late mother, the late President Corazon C. Aquino and his martyr father, the late Senator Benigno S. Aquino Jr. In his Presidency, he must live-up to the noble ideals of what his father said, “the Filipino is worth-dying for”, and the spirit of EDSA PEOPLE’S POWER REVOLUTION where Cory was catapulted to the Presidency. In the annals of Philippine history, it is undeniable fact, the Aquinos had surpassed the greatness and heroism of their times for the sake of liberty, freedom and democracy.

And towards the stride of reshaping and renewing the destiny of the Filipino Nation, it is but proper and fitting for the Presidency to cloth itself with the “Will” to succeed even in the most crucial times like now when the nation is engrossed with the love for welath and power, when leadership is bought by the money of the people in the hands of our politicains or political leaders with impunity and disregard of the rule of law.

To postpone ARMM Election is a decent, sane and very reasonable. It is a road towards recovery from insanity to uprightness, in search for the breed of new leaders whose vision must be the dreams of the couple: Senator Benigno S. Aquino and President Corazon C. Aquino. And therefore, to proceed with the ARMM Election in August would be the greatest joke ever in the lives of the Moro people. It is a waste of money, an exercise in futility, a mockery of democracy and paradise for dynasties.

For the last time, give peace a chance! With sincerity and true commitment of the Presidency, there are many MNLF good leaders, righteous and untested. It is high time for Pnoy to do away with divide and rule policies which will never propser. Likewise, it is not advisable for a Woman to head the ARMM. Considering a woman to be the Regional Governor is a blasphemy, not recommended and allowed in the Muslim policy. Otherwise abolish the ARMM and re-ngotiate. However, wisdom dictates, to continue the ARMM with honest, dedicated matured and responsible MNLF who are truly freedom fighters would be worthwhile deserving and just. Partisan politicking must be avoided. A Nation cannot propser and grow with bunch of opportunism. The ARMM is born out of the blood and tears of the Bangsamoro martyrs. They should not be failed. UNQOUTE.

By Peryasser Lahaman




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