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Wednesday, February 4, 2015

CBCS condoles fallen SAF commandos’ families

By Gideon C. Corgue

PAGADIAN CITY – The officers and members of the Consortium of Bangsa Moro Civil Society, Inc. (CBCSI) have condoled with the families of the members of the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) Special Action Force (SAF) killed in an “uncoordinated” encounter with the members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front’s (MILF) 105th base command and some members of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) in Tukanalipao, Mamasapano, Maguindanao last Jan. 25.
In its statement issued on Tuesday afternoon, the CBCSI appealed to every citizen of this country to refrain from issuing statements that would aggravate the situation. “It is always prudent to be calm at this point in time and exercise sobriety particularly when the elusive peace in Mindanao within reach. We fervently hope and pray that people will exercise utmost prudence on this trying time,” the statement read.
The CBCS said “while we recognize the strong resentment of many people around the country on this historic bloodshed, it is best that our judgment on the said incident should be based on the fact and truth. It is therefore wise to avoid finger pointing at anybody.”
On the other hand, the CBCSI lauded the recent statement of President Benigno Simeon Aquino III as a genuine reflection of his undying commitment to the Bangsamoro people’s desire for peace in Mindanao.
President Aquino said: “The success of the entire peace process is contingent in this law.”
We therefore believe that Malacanang is strongly putting resiliently its trust and confidence on the substance and importance of the Bangsa Moro Basic Law (BBL) as this will bring peace and development in Mindanao,” the statement further read.
The CBCS is further urging both panels, the government of the Republic of the Philippines (GPH) and the MILF to conduct impartial investigation as soonest possible time on the incident using mechanisms duly agreed upon under the ceasefire agreement with the participation of the third party to maximize the integrity of the result.
“We appeal to both sides to immediately review and operationalize ceasefire mechanisms such asAdhoc Joint Action Group (AJHAG), Coordinating Committee on the Cessation of Hostilities (CCCH), and International Monitoring Team (IMT) as this can help strategically defuse the tension now taking place in the area. As we believe that if the provisions in the ceasefire agreement strictly observed, the tragic incident should have been avoided.”
“We strongly appeal to congress, Senate and other government institutions not to equate the importance of BBL to the carnage, and instead make necessary measures allowing the peace to reign amid these challenges.  Despite of all we are all still confident, the sincerity of the government and both parties in general in finding ways to achieve peace in Mindanao is still unquestionable and solid,” the statement added.
Meanwhile, the CBCSI urged the media to be impartial in their reporting.
“As we vehemently condemn the bloody incident, we are calling upon the media as conveyors or truth to the public to be balanced, impartial, objective, and avoid provocative reporting.”
The CBCSI is composed of the following organizations, namely: Kadtuntaya Foundation, Inc., Mindanao Women Advocacy for Good Governance, Moro Women Development and Cultural Center, Inc., Mindanao Action for Peace and Development Initiatives, Inc., Young Advocate for Peace and Development Network, Forum ZFD, UNIPHYL Women, Kadtabanga Foundation, Community Organizers Multiversity, United Youth for Peace and Development, and Bangsa Moro Shariah Lawyers League, Inc.