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HomeFront PageOnline petition urging Duterte certify urgent BTA extension period gathers 500K signatures

Online petition urging Duterte certify urgent BTA extension period gathers 500K signatures

COTABATO CITY – The online petition urging President Rodrigo Roa Duterte to certify as urgent senate and house bills seeking to extend the Bangsamoro transition period has earned 535,953 signatures as of 4:03pm of March 2.

Mindanao Peoples Caucus (MPC) and Civil Society Organizations Movement for Moral Governance(CSO-MMG), who launched the petition on February 10, faced the media on Tuesday to provide updates.

“Considering the very limited session days remaining in Congress before it adjourns sine die on June 4, 2021, there is a need to certify the pending bills calling for the extension of the transition period so that it can be given more prominence and a sense of urgency given the equally important and competing concerns of Congress,” the petition stated.

“Mahalaga itong pag-issue ng certificate of urgency in the house and in the senate considering that we have a very limited window for the session in congress,” Atty. Mary Ann Arnado of MPC said.

She also said that Mindanao State University, Cotabato City State Polytechnic College, Ateneo de Zamboanga University, Ateneo De Davao University, Xavier University – Ateneo de Cagayan, and other academic institutions have signified their support to the petition.

Meanwhile, CSO-MMG representative Yul Aluya said organizations such as Bangsamoro Communication Network, and Sangguniang Kabataan in North Cotabato volunteered to help those who do not have internet access but want to sign the petition.

“Mahalaga ang petition na ito dahil boses ito ng mga mamamayan na nanawagan sa mahal na Pangulong Rodrigo Roa Duterte na suportahan, i-certify as ugent yung bill, padaliin yung process nung pag trabaho sa bill to extend the transition period to 2025,” Aluya said.

“Legacy po ito ng ating President Rodrigo Roa Duterte,” Aluya emphasized.

Also present during the press conference were Sentro Socksargen and Save Sulu Movement who are also supportive on the plea for extension.

Herbert Demos of Sentro Socksargen stressed that although they are not within the BARMM territory, it is important to support the Bangsamoro peace process.

“Nakasalalay dito yung kinabukasan ng mga kapatid natin na Moro, na makamtan talaga nila yung tunay na kapayapaan at kaunlaran sa BARMM,” said Demos.

Demos shared his organization has already collected 50,000 signatures from General Santos City, 10,000 from Saranggani, 10,000 from South Cotabato and around 5,000 signatures from Sultan Kudarat.

On the other hand, representative Juhan Alihuddinsaid said that the Save Sulu Movement (SSM), along with several organizations, organized rallies on January 21 in the province to show their support to the call for extension.

Alihuddin said SSM have already garnered 20,000 signatures in just three weeks since the petition started.

Meanwhile, Chairman Abdulhadi T. Daguit of the Federation of Bangsamoro Coordinating Council of the Philippines said that they have conducted barangay-to-barangay dialogues in Metro Manila.

The council has already collated 6,000 signatures after organizing a peace rally on February 16 in front of the Congress, and communicating with Muslim community leaders to encourage their constituents to support the extension.

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