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Looking Back: Murad to BIFF: “Join the peace process”

ALEX LOPEZ
Cotabato City
April 18

The leadership of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) recently extended its condolences, through a letter signed by chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim to the bereaved families of the late Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Movement (BIFM) and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) leader Ameril Ombra Kato and called on the members of the group to return to the folds of the MILF and join the peace process.

“The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and its military organ, the Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Forces (BIAF), wish to convey to the bereaved families of the late Ustadz Ameril Ombra kato and to the leadership of the BIFM/BIFF our brotherly sympathy and heartfelt condolence for his passing away last April 13, 2015,” Murad said.

He also urged the BIFF members, for the sake of brotherhood in Islam, to return to the MILF and join the ongoing peace process with the government.

“”At this juncture, as one brotherhood in Islam and the need for one struggle, the MILF calls upon the leaders and members of the BIFM/BIFF to return to the fold of the MILF and support the ongoing peace process and the passage of the BBL (Bangsamoro Basic Law) as the final solution to the centuries-old Bangsamoro question and conflict in Mindanao,” Murad added.

Murad assured the BIFF members of their safety as the peace panel “will do everything possible so that all of you will be covered by the protocols of the GPH-MILF peace process including the ceasefire.”

But the offer of Murad was refused by the BIFF.

In an interview with the media here, Abu Misry Mama, the spokesperson of the BIFF said that the BBL will not solve the problems in Mindanao.

The offer was good, Misry Mama pointed out, but their group could not accept the BBL.

“Napakabuting alok yon. Ang hinahanap ng BIFM/BIFF ay ang pangmatagalang kapayapaan sa Mindanao (That was a good offer. The BIFM/BIFF seeks for lasting peace in Mindanao),” he said.

He added that they will not go back to the folds of the MILF if they would be asked to join the peace process and embrace the provisions of the BBL.

“Pero kung sa BBL ang pag-usapan Malabo kaming magbalik (If it’s for the BBL then we will not go back),” he stressed.

Misry Mama told Murad to continue with their works and in the peace process as the BIFM/BIFF will also continue its mission.

“Kaya gawain na nila ang gusto nilang gawain. Kung maresulba nila ang problema sa Mindanao hihinto na lang kami (They have to pursue what they want to do. If they can resolve the problems in Mindanao then we will stop),” he emphasized.

The BIFM/BIFF broke away from the leadership of the MILF in 2008 when the Supreme Court declared the Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain (MOA-AD) as unconstitutional.

Since then, the BIFM’s armed wing, the BIFF has launched series of armed offensives against military installations and communities in the provinces of Maguindanao and North Cotabato. Ranao Star
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