Beng reiterates stand on Bangsamoro issue PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 18 January 2014 13:39

Mayor Beng Climaco has expressed anew the city’s support to peace initiatives of President Aquino but emphasized that Zamboanga is neither included nor part of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) based on two plebiscites and will not become part of the proposed Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB).

Mayor Climaco reiterated the city’s stand on the issue yesterday, as the City Government joined the International Monitoring Team (IMT), Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) and the Barangay Council of Cawit in the conduct of a dialogue with the members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) at the Cawit gymnasium Friday morning.

The issue about the MILF stemmed from a letter from the Cawit Barangay Council bringing to the attention of the city about the setting up of a political office of the MILF called Bangsamoro Political Office and a Women’s cooperative for MILF members in the Cawit area.

Because of this, the City Government through the City Legal Office (CLO) has written the OPAPP asking for clarification about the matter that led to the dialogue yesterday.

“Zamboanga City is not part of the ARMM, the Framework Agreement on Bagsamoro and any group representing the MILF and the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) is not going to be recognized as far as the city is concerned,” Mayor Climaco declared.

She stressed that it is now the role of the IMT and the OPAPP to go down to the ground to talk to t he people and clarify what the peace process is all about.

“We do not want to add to the problems of the city that is why we are here for the dialogue,” Mayor Climaco added.

During the dialogue, both IMT-Site 3 team leader Col. Zol Hasim and OPAPP representative Maj. Abdurasad Sirajan of AHJAG- OPAPP said the group cannot establish any office pending the finalization of the peace agreement between the government and the MILF.

Col. Hasim directed the group led Jusali Musali to dismantle all structures they set up in Cawit as he declared “Zamboanga is non-negotiable”.

Also present during the dialogue and the subsequent press briefing were Vice Mayor Cesar Iturralde, Councilors BG Guingona, Eddie Saavedra and Jawo Jimenez, City Legal Officer Atty. Jesus Carbon, Cawit Barangay officials and numerous others. —Sheila Covarrubias