HB 6475 Bangsamoro government

Published June 6, 2018, 10:00 PM

by Mario Casayuran and Vanne Elaine Terrazola

Erik Espina
Erik Espina

By Erik Espina

(Part 2)


The peddled formula for lasting peace in Southern Mindanao is a reprise of previous presidential efforts (except Joseph Estrada and Ferdinand Marcos) creating a Bangsamoro government for an armed few who refuse to be called Filipinos. They claim the ancient pejorative of “Moro” to force a synthetic, and homogenized identity for all Muslims. This transcendent “Moro-hood” is an affinity many cultural-linguistic groups in Southern Mindanao actually reject. Unfortunately, government is officially reviving, even sanctioning what colonial (Spanish and American) officials advocated – “divide and conquer” schemes.

The United States has used this strategy vs. warlike Indian nations back home. It replicate this, including separating Mindanao from the archipelago. They envisioned Mindanao as another Hawaii for rest, recreation, and resources. Keen observers of HB 6475 question Congress crafting a “VIP” bill to benefit the MILF against the greater number of Filipinos (Muslims) who remain patriotic, peace-loving, law-abiding, yet marginalized in this conflict. The Filipino people are being coerced to enroll a sizable share of taxes to a vanquished liberation front.

The last effort to establish BBL resulted in the dastardly massacre of the SAF-44. Explain this to their widows and orphans, and the rest of the country.

Who are the rightful claimants to this ancestral domain – as first inhabitants into our seminal archipelago? The settlers in Cagayan Valley (750,000 BC), in the Cabalwan anticline, or in Palawan Tabon Cave (50,000-60,000 BC)? If this is righting past injustices, blame royal houses (armed with kampilan or kris) baptized to Catholicism, blood compacts, peace agreements, and armed defeat – 1565 Sikatuna-Legaspi Blood Compact, Bates Agreement of August, 1899, similar to the one signed with Spain in 1887, defeat in Lamitan in 1637 of Sultan Kudarat, the Carpenter Agreement of 1915, the 1940s Muslim feudal elite etc. And what of Visayans’ historical gripes? Slave raiding and trade versus Lapu-Lapu? His people abducted to distant Mindanao? To be called Visayan means – slave.