Cotabato City—Moro officials and peace activists said the congressional concurrence on the Presidential Amnesty Proclamations signaled a strong government push for the continuity of the peace process.
Lawyer Naguib Sinarimbo, spokesperson of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) described Resolution No. 12 passed by Congress as a “milestone that is very significant” to the normalization aspect of the 2014 Comprehensive Agreement on the
It can be recalled that on February 17, 2021, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte issued Presidential Proclamations 1090, 1091, and 1092 to grant amnesty to members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF); Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF); Rebolusyonaryong Partido ng Manggagawa ng Pilipinas, and Revolutionary Proletarian Army, Alex Boncayao Brigade (RPMP-RPA-ABB).
The House of Representatives and the Senate have separately passed Resolution No. 12 concurring on such Presidential Proclamations, one
after the other on Monday and Tuesday.
Sinarimbo said acts in violation of laws, including possession of firearms in pursuit of the Moro cause for self-determination, were incidental to most of the 12,000 or so Moro guerrillas currently undergoing the normalization process.
He said an amnesty restores the civil rights of persons involved in rebellion to be reintegrated back into the mainstream society, live a normal life and exercise rights of every citizen.
A Normalization Process is provided in the CAB Annexes on the Peace Process between the Philippine Government and the MILF.Lawmakers said Joint Resolution No. 12 concurs in with Presidential Proclamations 1090, 1091, and 1092.
In his sponsorship speech, Senator Panfilo Lacson said the measure also provided a joint congressional concurrence for Executive Order No. 125, creating of the National Amnesty Commission.
“Never in our history has our nation sought and demanded a ‘time of healing’ with much fervor and tenacity than we do today—healing from the health crisis which scarred our people; healing from the economic, social, and political distress that, by and large, spoiled our nation,” Lacson said.
Sinarimbo who also heads the BARMM’s Ministry of the Interior and Local Government (MILG) said: “Everyone knows that majority of the
MILF members who fought against the government have incidentally committed violations of the law, in the pursuit of their political beliefs.”
He said the measure separately adopted by Congress affirmed a constitutional power vested in the President to grant amnesty. The national government recognized the legitimacy of the Moro cause in pursuit of the right to self-determination, and thus the grant of amnesty,” he added.
“Mr. President, to say that this is an ‘act of compassion’ may not be enough without emphasizing what it truly stands for, that is an act of
mercy not only for those who will be granted amnesty but also for those who seek a true and lasting national peace and reconciliation,”
Lacson pointed out in his sponsorship speech.