Mindanao leaders push federal system PDF Print E-mail
Sunday, 14 September 2014 14:28

Mindanao leaders on Thursday night held a closed door meeting to brainstorm on the possibility of pushing a Federal system of government with the final draft of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) submitted to Congress.

The meeting was attended by Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, Cagayan de Oro Mayor Vicente Emano, former Cagayan de Oro Mayor Reuben Canoy, Bukidnon Governor Jose Miguel Zubiri and former Zamboanga del Norte Rep. Romeo Jalosjos.

Close sources, who were given access to the meeting, disclosed that the meeting was a light discussion among the Mindanao leaders, who see a Federal system as the solution to insurgency problem in Mindanao.

The two-hour meeting ended with the leaders agreeing that it is also time to discuss the shift to Federalism.

According to Canoy, who is part of the Council of Leaders in Mindanao, a shift to Federal system was the consensus reached by the Mindanao leaders. The Council of Leaders is composed of Duterte, Jalosjos, Emano, Zubiri and former Transportation and Communications Secretary Pantaleon Alvarez.

Canoy disclosed that they tackled varied issues facing the country, but most importantly, they also agreed to support the BBL even if some issues still need to be addressed.

According to sources, one of the pressing issues was how to address some aspirations of the Moro population outside of the identified core territories. It may be recalled that some Moro in some parts of Mindanao and the Visayas that are not included in the core territories wanted to be part of the core areas.

Duterte had told reporters that a group of Mindanao leaders will go to Cebu to discuss on Federalism.

The mayor has assured that they are pushing Federalism not to sever ties with Manila.

In the past years, the Mindanao leaders pose a strong call for a Federal system.

A proposal was pushed in 2008 by then senator Aquilino Pimentel when he pushed the Joint Resolution No. 10, which would have created eleven autonomous regions out of the Philippine Republic, establishing eleven centers of finance and development in the country.

It was learned that the resolution would have required the revision of 14 of the 18 Articles of the 1987 Philippine Constitution and the addition of two new articles. The proposed bill was even supported by 13 senators.