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Window for MILF to show sincerity

12:02 AM February 06, 2015

There is only one course of action open to the Filipino nation following the merciless killing in Maguindanao of our policemen by armed elements of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). That is to suspend further deliberations on the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) until justice is done for our fallen policemen.

There is a need to suspend further action on the BBL considering the tacit admission of President Aquino that it would take time to gather the evidence against the perpetrators of the crime. What makes things very uncertain is the fact that we do not know when the MILF will name the persons involved in the attack and, more importantly, if they would be turned over to the custody of the authorities to face the corresponding charges.

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The suspension of the deliberations on the BBL is not only dictated by the respect we should accord the memory of the fallen policemen. The process to set up the Bangsamoro will fail in its objective to achieve peace if it is not accompanied with justice. And justice is what the nation needs right now to heal the wound it has suffered.

If we cannot have justice now, it would be naive to think that we can have it once the Bangsamoro is constituted. This is not the recipe for peace. In the wake of this meaningless tragedy, the MILF should seize the opportunity to demonstrate its sincerity to the peace process by recognizing the supremacy of our laws.

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—MARIO GUARIÑA III, former associate justice of the Court of Appeals, Parañaque City

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TAGS: Bangsamoro Basic Law, Maguindanao, Moro Islamic Liberation Front
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