Odd role played by PNoy
There were three things that transpired this week, perhaps by coincidence but definitely intended to convince the people to accept the shameful Bangsamoro Basic Law.
First was the killing of terrorist Abdul Basit Usman allegedly by members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. Second, the result of an alleged survey conducted by the Social Weather Station from March 20 to 23 claiming that 45 percent or that the majority still favors peaceful negotiations with the MILF. And third, the statement made by President Aquino that he wants the BBL approved by Congress without any amendment. It seems all are meant to condition the people that they will have to live with the possibility that this country will finally be partitioned not at the behest of our enemy, but by the very people who made their political orgy at Edsa claiming it was they who restored democracy and freedom to the land of the heathens.
First, on the killing of Usman, there are three versions of what happened. One version is that he was killed in a “chance” encounter with the men of Commander Barok of the MILF’s 118 Base Command stationed in Sitio Takeneken in Barangay Muti, Guindalangan, Maguindanao Province. The second version was that he and five of his bodyguards were killed in a shootout with fellow members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF). And the third version was that he was gunned down by his own bodyguard who has become a government asset while he was listening to a radio broadcast of the Pacquiao-Mayweather fight. All versions have yet to be verified, while the MILF said it cannot give any statement, they being “restrained by the communications protocol governing dissemination of accomplishments in the “bilateral” activities in areas covered by the July 1997 Agreement of General Cessation of Hostilities under the Government-MILF Ceasefire Agreement.”
Whatever is the truth, the thing that is certain is that Usman was operating within the MILF’s controlled areas, and mingling with them but only to present himself and his followers as alleged members of the BIFF if exigency would require. Whether it was the MILF, BIFF or the undercover operatives of the military who killed him is of no moment because they all have their interest in wanting to get him. Usman was “ripe” for the killing, and those who want him dead expected to hit two birds with one stone – that is, getting rid of him to save the floundering peace agreement and in getting the bounty of $1 million offered by the US and the P6.3 million offered by the government. Nonetheless, many are inclined to believe he was killed for the money, and that made them no different from their hated Christian infidels.
Immediately after going through with their sacrificial lamb, our government officials almost unanimously praised the killing as “a step towards the right direction.” It was as if having Usman alive will pose as hindrance to the passage of the BBL, and that getting rid of him would remove the unconstitutional provisions that were blindly accepted by our stupid panel. With or without Usman, just the same the controversial provisions will remain, unless deleted or amended by Congress. In fact, the MILF is particular in specifying the use of such term as “bilateral” and “consent,” indicate their insistence of being treated as co-equal with the government. In that, the statement made by Senate President Franklin Drilon that the rubout of Usman cleared the way for the ratification of the BBL makes no sense.
On the survey conducted by the SWS, noticeable is that the question was framed in such a way that the person is likely to give a positive answer. It was misleading because nobody would be against any peaceful negotiations. In fact, if the same people favoring a peaceful negotiation had the knowledge that it would result in the partitioning of the Republic to create a Bangsamoro state, they would have answered negatively. The 45 percent who favored peaceful negotiations as against the 20 percent who favored a military operation (not a solution as it should be), and the 35 percent who favored both as equally effective was a deception. They equated peaceful negotiations as in favor of peace, and those that favor peace would have no reason to reject the BBL, which ipso facto does not follow. As lawyers would put it, the question framed by the SWS is equivalent to laying the predicate that he cannot contradict himself by retracting even after realizing he would be losing his own pants.
Finally, President Aquino then came out with a statement saying he wants the BBL ratified without any amendment. Then, why did he convene the so-called “Peace Council” made up of a select group of hypocrites and self-righteous to study the contentious provisions in the BBL seen by many as unconstitutional? Notably, they are the men who have been styling themselves as the guardians of what is good or bad for the country. The statement read by his Presidential Communication Operations Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. that PNoy would not accept any amendment or a “watered down” version of the proposed law, just rendered the role of the Peace Council redundant. In effect, PNoy appointed highly paid people to do a sinecure job of just inserting their signatures, as if to vouch it is enough to convince our people that the BBL will be good for them.
Finally, the demand made by PNoy is a betrayal of public trust because he is not supposed to pre-empt what Congress is supposed to do. His statement was a reproach to Congress not to exercise its constitutional right to approve or reject proposed a law. Right now, the majority of the people is against the approval of the BBL, and is looking forward to Congress to do the job of saving the country from falling apart. The panel was supposed to come out with a formula for a peaceful settlement, but they came out with a sellout agreement. In fact, the position of PNoy was an implied warning that should anybody defy the order, they would lose either their pork barrel needed to sustain the political circus, and the huge amount of grease money believed ready to be doled out to anybody who would ratify it.
Most serious is that he appears as though he is the spokesman of the MILF, or worse, has been blackmailed. The conduct of the President is strange because his interest is to go along with the wishes of the people. His arbitrary usurpation of the role played by that Malaysian lackey Mohagher Iqbal is unusual, for instead of him advising the MILF to abide by the decision of Congress, it being a part of our democratic and constitutional process, he is the one telling Congress he would not take “no” for an answer even if at stake is the future of our republic - whether it will remain one and united or give way to the creation of a Malaysian puppet state called Bangsamoro Islamic State.