Celso, Beng, Lilia voice out united position on BBL PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 15 May 2015 17:31

By BHONG SIMBAJON

Zamboanga City officials expressed their strong and united position against the city’s inclusion in the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law which was deliberated during a Senate public hearing held at Astoria Hotel’s Royce Convention Center.

The Senate Committee on Local Government chaired by Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos,Jr and co-chaired by Senator Alan Peter Cayetano led panel discussions and deliberations on the floor with regard to positions of various sectors in Zamboanga City and Basilan province whose representatives attended the jampacked six-hour hearing.

Some 23 position papers submitted by various sectors both from the local government and the private sectors were given chance by Senator Marcos to be tackled in the public hearing.

District 1 Congressman Celso Lobregat stood firm and reiterated his position on some 123 amendments in the proposed BBL pending finality in Congress.

Lobregat repeated that the people of Zamboanga are not against the quest for peace and the BBL itself, but the government should respect its position that the city be excluded in whatsoever provisions or terms from within the proposed Bangsamoro Law which would have any basis for the proposed government to have a hand on its governance, land area, municipal waters, or properties of the ARMM which are situation within Zamboanga City itself.

District 2 Rep. Lilia Nuno also spoke her position on some provisions and its constitutionality acknowledging the national government’s effort in pursuing peace here in Mindanao. However, she said, it should be within the framework of the Constitution and should not compromise the common good, especially those people whose areas they want to be out of the Bangsamoro jurisdiction like Zamboanga City.

Mayor Beng Climaco stressed that Zamboanga City’s position since November 14, 2014 when the ADHOC Committee on the Bangsamoro of the House of Representatives came to the city to conduct similar hearings remains the same.

Climaco cited emphasized the strong and unified position of Zamboangenos having “one flag, one nation, one Zamboanga city, united and undivided  98 barangays under one Republic of the Philippines.”

The members of the Sangguniang Panlungsod (City Council) in a recent resolution passed during their regular session voiced their strong position on the proposed BBL especially the provisions affecting Zamboanga City.

Led by Vice Mayor Cesar Itturalde and armed with Resolution No.1320, the council members stood united in their arguments and recommendations on the issues which for them, should be reviewed and considered for amendments by the Marcos Committee.

These issues include (1)The definition of the Bangsamoro Territory and inclusion/Exclusion of Zamboanga City;(2) On the option (OPT-IN ANYTIME) to join the Bangsamoro Entity at anytime;(3)On the Bangsamoro Waters and Zones of Joint Cooperation in the Sulu Sea and Moro Gulf; (4) On the Exclusive Powers Over Inland Waters; (5) On the Disposition of Certain Real Properties of The Autonomous Region; and six other recommendations in general pertaining to the provisions of Bangsamoro independence,Dis-armament, Demobilization and Re-integration(DDR), the Bangsamoro Territory and the Ancestral homeland issue, the contiguity by land or the word areas should be clearly defined, removing the provisions of Zones of Joint Cooperation in the Sulu Sea and Moro Gulf, providing order and to protect and advance national interest and security, and to retain or immediately implement the provisions of Republic Act 9054,Article XVII,Transitory provisions, Section 1, for the national government to purchase the Cabatangan Properties from the ARMM and the properties of SPDA located in Zamboanga City.

The foregoing recommendations were submitted in position papers comprising the entirety of the local government as well as the members of the House of Representatives representing Zamboanga City, for the approval and adoption as the official position of the City of Zamboanga on the matter of the passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL). — Bhong Simbajon RMN News