Aquino open to holding dialogue with senators on Mamasapano ops
After convincing members of the House of Representatives to resume the deliberations on the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), President Benigno Aquino III is also open to holding the same dialogue with senators, Malacanang said Tuesday.
“Hindi naman maipapasa ‘yung batas na iisang house of Congress lamang; dalawang houses ito dapat. Kaya’t mahalagang stakeholders din po ang ating mga senador at sa aspetong ‘yan, sa pakiwari ko naman ay bukas ang Pangulo sa pakikipag-usap sa kanila kung ito ring paksang ito ang tatalakayin,” Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said in a press briefing.
On Monday, President Aquino personally briefed House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. and other congressional leaders on the bloody Mamasapano incident which killed 44 Special Action Force (SAF) troops.
Cagayan de Oro Representative Rufus Rodriguez, chairman of the House special ad hoc committee on the BBL, said the House of Representatives will resume its hearing on the Bangsamoro law next week, March 3 or 4.
Coloma said the President wants to reiterate to the members of Congress — both House of Representatives and the Senate — the implications of suspending the discussions on the BBL.
“Sa tingin ko ang sinasabi lang naman ng Pangulo dito, e kung naniniwala talaga tayo sa prosesong kapayapaan at kung naniniwala tayo na maaaring maging instrumento para sa pagtamo ng kapayapaan itong BBL, unawain natin na kailangan nitong maipasa sa lalong madaling panahon,” he said.
Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., who sits as the chairman of the Senate committee on local government, said deliberations on the BBL will only resume once the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) submits its own report on the Mamasapano incident.
The MILF is being blamed for the killing of SAF troopers in the January 25 police operation against terrorists Zulkifli bin Hir, alias Marwan, and Basit Usman in Mamasapano, Maguindanao.