Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao interim chief minister Al-Hajj Ebrahim Murad has accepted Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol to represent the Duterte administration in the region.
Speaking to Palace reporters, Duterte himself bared Murad and other Bangsamoro officials had approved of Piñol’s transfer.
Asked if Murad and BARMM officials already nodded to Piñol’s transfer, the Chief Executive said: “Yeah.”
This came after the President met with Murad in Malacañang on Wednesday evening.
According to Duterte, they were attempting to “fine-tune” the affairs between the national government and the BARMM.
“Well, we are trying to fine-tune. And that is why the truth of the matter is I really transferred Piñol to assist them,” the President said in a chance interview.
“But I don’t have a point man who was born there [and] grew up there. [He is] a farmer [and] he became governor for a long time. I’m sure he can help the BARMM and the government to fast track everything,” he continued.
“I am most interested that the Moro people will see what they are asking for. To move faster, so that you will realize the dream state that you have been asking for and fighting for,” he added.
The appointment of Piñol, however, came with a lot of worries as some Moro leaders previously raised doubts on the Agriculture chief, recalling the role Piñol played in the junking of the memorandum of agreement on ancestral domain in 2008.
Meanwhile, the President also said his administration was going to have another dialogue with Moro National Liberation Front founding chair Nur Misuari next week.
“We have also tentatively scheduled the talks between the MILF and government next week. So, we’re going to discuss what kind of structure do they want,” he told reporters.
President Rodrigo Duterte, for the third time, earlier met with the MNLF chief last Tuesday night.
The Chief Executive bared he was “in a hurry” to make a pact with Misuari. The 80-year-old Moro revolutionary even dared to go to war against the government should it failed to implement federalism.
The President has previously ordered Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana, Interior Secretary Eduardo Año, Presidential Adviser for the Peace Process Carlito Galvez to craft a new deal with the MNLF. The details of which, however, have not been released yet.