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MANILA — The holding of the next plebiscite on the Bangsamoro Organic Law next month will depend on the positive result of the first referendum held Monday in seven areas in Mindanao, Comelec Spokesman James Jimenez said.

“So the only outcome that will actually have an impact is if there is a ‘yes’ vote,” Jimenez said in an interview.

The plebiscite for the ratification of the BOL that would create the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) was conducted on Monday.

It was held in the provinces of Basilan, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi under the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), as well as in Cotabato City and Isabela City.

“If the ‘no’ vote wins on January 21, the weight of legal opinion is that the Bangsamoro region might not be even created at all,” said the
poll body official.

Comelec declares BOL plebscite a success

“So if it’s not created at all, it stands to reason that there might
be no need to ask if they (contiguous areas) should be included (in
the Bangsamoro),” he added.

If needed, the second plebiscite will be held on February 6 in the
province of Lanao del Norte, except Iligan City; the municipalities of
Aleosan, Carmen, Kabacan, Midsayap, Pikit, and Pigkawayan in the
province of North Cotabato; and the 28 barangays that sought for
voluntary inclusion. (PNA)