BARMM Spokesman Says Bangsamoro Officials under Autonomy, Not Part of Executive Department


BARMM Spokesman and Interior Minister Naguib G. Sinarimbo. (Credit: MILG)

By EDD K. USMAN @edd1819 @bluestar0910 SDN – Science and Digital News

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(SDN) — Officials of the Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) are under zn autonomy, and not part of the national government’s Executive Department.

Lawyer Naguib G. Sinarimbo, spokesman of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), which is being governed by the BTA, made the clarification in the light of Memorandum Circular (MC) No. 1.

MC No. 1 issued by the administration of President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. and signed by Executive Secretary Victor D. Rodriguez on June 30, 2022 pertains to the order for the resignation of all coterminous officials from the previous administration. Noontime of June 30 was the start of the Marcos administration.

Affected, among others, by the circular includes presidential appointees with coterminous classification, presidential appointees appointed to positions created in excess of an agency’s authorized staffing pattern, non-Career Executive Service Officials (CESO) who filled up CESO positions, as well as contractual and/or casual employees of the Executive Department.

MC No. 1 also stipulates that positions vacated because of it shall then be assumed by the next in rank and most senior officials as officers-in-charge (OICs). OICs have until July 31, or until they have their replacements.

But as Sinarimbo, head of the BARMM’s Ministry of the Interior and Local Government (MILG) emphasized, Bangsamoro government officials are not in the line of fire, so to speak, of MC No. 1

“We are an autonomous region with an asymmetric relation with the National Government. The BTA, as the Parliament, combines the legislative and executive powers of the Bangsamoro Government and is not under the Executive. In fact, in the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL), the BTA relates to Congress thru the Congress-Bangsamoro Parliament Forum (CBPF).
“This evolution of the relationship between the Bangsamoro Government and the National Government as well as the consequent powers granted by law for the exercise of self-governance has been achieved by the MILF (Moro Islamic Liberation Front) thru its struggle and the resultant peace negotiations that it painstakingly pursued,” says Sinarimbo.
It can be recalled that former President Rodrigo R. Duterte who bowed out on upon Marcos, Jr.’s assumption, appointed 80 BTA officials in 2019 for a three-year term until June 30, 2022. Before the May 9 elections this year, he extended their appointments to until June 30, 2025 when the BARMM shall have conducted its first regional elections.
Duterte appointed 40 people to the BTA from the government side, and 39 from the MILF as called for by the BARMM’s organic law.
As agreed between the government and the MILF the BARMM is a parliamentary form of governance. The two parties signed on March 27, 2014 the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB), which gave birth to the BARMM.
The Bangsamoro region is comprised of the provinces of Basilan, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi, and the cities of Cotabato, Lamitan, and Marawi, as well as the Special Geographic Area (SGA) made up of 63 barangays or villages in North Cotabato that opted to be under BARMM jurisdiction. North Cotabato itself is not part of the region. (✓)

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