MANILA, Philippines — Two proposed bills regarding the passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law are now up for deliberation in the Senate.
One of them is the proposed version of Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III.
According to Professor Ramon Casiple, a political analyst, the concept of a “substate” or shared country’s sovereignty will be a contentious issue in the passage of the bill.
Pimentel’s version states that the proposed autonomous region basic law gives the Bangsamoro regional government exclusive powers.
These include matters on agriculture, contract loans, trade, investment, labor, employment, tourism, budgeting, establishment of own government-owned and/or controlled corporations (GOCC) and other financial institutions and others.
According to legal expert Atty. George Erwin Garcia, this is one of the provisions which lawmakers should look into as to its constitutionality, particularly regarding the Philippines’ sovereignty.
“Because if a certain part of a state or territory can manage its own affairs, can conduct relations with even other states, can implement its own law whether criminals, civil, whatever law, within the territory, then its already independent,” said Atty. Garcia in a phone interview.
Even President Rodrigo Duterte had earlier expressed concern over some provisions of the BBL that may be in contradiction to what the Constitution states.
Senate committee on local government chairperson, Senator Sonny Angara, however, assures that the BBL will be within the bounds of the Constitution as it was drafted after thorough consultations and debates. — Nel Maribojoc | UNTV News & Rescue
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