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BBL consultation in Zambo set Feb 9

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Congressman Celso Lobregat manifested to the Senate the strong position of Zamboanga City to the ongoing efforts of the present administration to finalize a new version of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL).

In an interview with RMN Zamboanga, Lobregat said that he went to the Senate last week to personally make a follow-up on his bills with various committee chairmen, when Senate President Koko Pimentel requested him to have a luncheon meeting and discuss good governance for Mindanao, as well as the status of the BBL consolidation in congress, wherein Lobregat is one of the sub-committee members.

During the meeting, Lobregat suggested that instead of only consulting the provinces of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi on the BBL issue, Senator Migz Zubiri, Committee Chairman on the BBL issue and Senate President Pimentel should also include Zamboanga City in the said consultations considering that the city is adjacent to the ARMM provinces, and that the senate must know that Zamboanga City is strongly opposing the inclusion of any of its barangays or territory in the proposed BBL.

"I suggested to senator Zubiri that Zamboanga City should also be consulted when they come here in Western Mindanao region. We must be heard and we will have to reiterate our position against the inclusion of our city to any form of autonomy," Lobregat stressed.

The solon said that Zubiri's committee agreed to his request and that Zamboanga City will now be part of the scheduled itinerary this week for the conduct of a BLL public consultation.

Lobregat said that he also told Zubiri to coordinate with the local government for the preparations and the availability of Centro Latino to be the venue of the said consultation, but accordingly, it is not available on the said schedule. So Lobregat called Dr. Nelson Cabral of the Zamboanga City State Polytechnic College (ZCSPC) requesting to use the schools gymnasium as venue for the said activity.

Lobregat confirmed that the senate BBL commitee will conduct consultations on February 8 in Jolo and Tawi-Tawi.

And on February 9 in Basilan and Zamboanga.

"Let me reiterate that I am for peace. I am not anti-peace. But let's have a BBL that is fair, just and in accordance with the legalities bounded in our present laws. I will be here standing firm in defense of our city 'till the very end," Lobregat said.

Lobregat is urging Zamboangueños to stand united and to once again let their voices be heared by the senators that the city is for peace, but against its inclusion in any form of BBL territories, and that the BBL should be in accordance with the Philippine Constitution. (Dexter Yap/PR)




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