Rep. Fabian lauds new peace deal, thanks Pnoy, MILF for excluding ZC PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 09 October 2012 14:09

Congressman Erico Basilio “Erbie” A. Fabian and Councilor Melchor “Mel” Sadain yesterday lauded President Aquino, the government peace panel and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) for forging a new peace agreement that excludes Zamboanga city from the proposed Bangsamoro Autonomous Government.

The government peace panel announced last Sunday a major breakthrough in the peace talks and that the final agreement will be signed in the Philippines in the presence of Pres. Aquino, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and MILF chief Al Haj Murad Ibrahim.

In 2008, Fabian led some Mindanao leaders in filing a petition with the Supreme Court questioning the constitutionality of a peace agreement that would have created a Bangsamoro Homeland which would have led to the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain (MOA-AD).

The high court ruled in favor of the petitioners which prompted the government to work for another accord with the MILF in the best interest of both parties and people of the affected areas.

Fabian said that Zamboanga has been fighting against inclusion in any form of autonomous government in Mindanao since 1976. The government held a series of referenda and plebiscites in the past, and Zamboanga had always voted overwhelmingly against inclusion in the existing Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

“The people in Zamboanga, Muslim and Christian alike, can co-exist and live peacefully and harmoniously. He have had no problems with that,” Fabian said.

“Finally, our voices have been heard. And, I thank President Aquino, the peace panels of both sides for heeding our sentiments,” Fabian added.

Meanwhile, Councilor Sadain thanked the government peace panel for listening to the sentiments of the people. Because of his resolution filed in the city council, the government peace panel held three public consultations in Zamboanga where the voices of the officials and the cross-section of the city were heard and consolidated.
Based on newspaper reports, the autonomous region under the new deal will comprise six municipalities in Lanao del Norte, six municipalities in North Cotabato, and the cities of Cotabato and Isabela in Basilan. The southern part of Palawan is not included in the new political entity.

Chief peace negotiator Marvic Leonen has been authorized to give the full details of the new peace treaty. —BJ