Al Camlian: The Birth of the Moro National Liberation Front

MNLF Founding Chairman Prof. Nur P. Misuari on Qatar Airways jet returning to Manila from one of the peace talks with the Philippine government in Tripoli, Libya. (Photo: SDN — SciTech and Digital News)
MILF Founder & Chairman Ustadhz Salamat Hashim taken on Sept. 11, 2001 at his house in Camp Rajamuda, Buliok, Maguindanao and North Cotabato. (Photo: SDN — SciTech and Digital News)

By EDD K. USMAN | Twitter: @edd1819 | Instagram: @bluestar0910 Facebook: SDN — SciTech and Digital News

Part 4 of 4 (Conclusion)

Editor’s Note: SDN — SciTech and Digital News is in possession of a rare and ONLY Official list of the names of the MNLF elite Top 90 cadre who were trained by foreign military experts. This is a humble attempt to honor the Moro braves and the Moro leader who sent them off.

Short link:

MANILA (SDN) — And the “inevitable” happened. Massacres of Moro men, women, young and old, including children perpetrated by elements of state forces and their bands of suicidal “Ilaga”, a ferocious, para-military militia, the rampaging fanatics with unspoken cruelties, creating rivers of Moro blood.

The Jabidah Massacre on Corregidor Island on March 18, 1968, where at least 27 young Moro trainees were murdered; the Manili Massacre in Carmen, North Cotabato, on June 19, 1971, where 70 Muslims were murdered, treacherously because they were called by Christian village leaders to the Manili Mosque for a supposed community meeting. But they were shot wholesale and a grenade hurled in their midst.

More massacres and murders of innocent Muslims continued in Mindanao, grisly purges and brutal ethnic cleansing of the Moro tribes.

Related: Al Camlian: Recruitment of Moro Trainees for Guerrilla Training Starts

Abdulla ‘Al’ Camlian (right) and MILF Chief Negotiator Mohagher M. Iqbal. (Credit and thanks to Rappler)

Following the training of the Top 90, Camlian also was at the lead of the sending off of 300 more Moro trainees to the same foreign training base.

One curiosity emerged when the 300 trainees all arrived at the training base. Not one trainee from Lanao. Only from Maguindanao, Basilan, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi. This was revealed to SDN — SciTech and Digital News by a prominent member of the Top 300, one of the Magic 8 members that split from the MNLF and fought Misuari. He is now a mayor in Tawi-Tawi.

In 1970 at the training base of the 300 cadre members, Abdulla “Al” Camlian recalled, the trainees discussed and adopted the name of the organization. Ahmad “Commander Bond” Sumandal of Jolo, Sulu, coined the name Moro National Liberation Front. Everyone agreed and adopted the name. Thus, was born the MNLF!

Some members of the cadre of 90 attended the meeting of the 300 trainees in their foreign base in a “friendly foreign country”, among them, Prof. Nur P. Misuari, Utuh Salahuddin, Hudan Abubakar, Abdulmannan Abbas, and Sali Wali. Camlian was present, too.

It was there at the meeting that Misuari was formally recognized as the MNLF’s founding chairman. No general meeting involving all the 90 and the 300 core trainees was held because it was overtaken by what was already happening in Mindanao.

Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) women fighters, Camp Dulay, Lanao del Sur. For illustration only. (Credit: MNLF RNUC)

Abdulgani “Gerry” A. Salapuddin, another former prominent member of the MNLF, said there were more batches sent to foreign countries, including to the Middle East, for their guerrilla training. Salapuddin was with the Bombardment batch of trainees.

Here’s the remaining names of the Top 90:

3. EF Group — 21 (3rd Batch)

  • 42. Alawi “Awing” Mohammad
  • 43. Amoran “Amor” Banocag
  • 44. Amil “Pro” Alonto
  • 45. Arif “Arif” Diragun
  • 46. Ali “Alex” Lucman
  • 47. Ali Pangadapun
  • 48. Acmad “Manok” Pangoh
  • 49. Bedo “Eddie” Malaguiok”
  • 50. Carim “Remy” Barabato
  • 51. Casan “Pabo” Lucman
  • 52. Faisal “Faih” Camlian
  • 53. Indosan “Freddie” Dalandas
  • 54. Indar “Dary” Tampi
  • 55. Korais Malamalo
  • 56. Lantong “Ayob” Diron
  • 57. Mohammad Waqas “Merah” Pimping
  • 58. Mama “Mike-British” Sumandad
  • 59. Mandangan “Manda” Domato
  • 60. Nurullaji “Nur” “Prof” Misuari
  • 61. Pundumah “Dumah” Sani
  • 62. Sali “Lexa” Lucman
  • 63. Subbhani “Subbah” Taha
  • 64. Salakayan “Lucky” Sultan
  • 65.Salic “Tony” Gana
  • 66. Salic “Larry” Kamad
  • 67. Sirad “Seeing” Alonto
  • 68. Subair “Bert” Macabenta

4. GH Group 7 (4th Batch)

  • 69. Aben “Ben” Abubakar
  • 70. Abdillah Jakaria
  • 71. Abdurasid “Congo” Sabandal
  • 72. Bammer Lucman
  • 73. Bubong “Mayor” Domato
  • 74. Haber “Haber” Mustapha
  • 75. Hajal Nonong
  • 76. Ibrahim Dahim
  • 77. Jerry “Jerry” Angah
  • 78. Kabasalan Hatalan
  • 79. Lae “Lae” Tanjing
  • 80. Mahdi “Mads” Tambara
  • 81. Misangcao “Sonny” Boncarawan
  • 82. Max “Max” Jumdana
  • 83. Norman Buisan
  • 84. Naga “Mike Native” Mimbisa
  • 85. Paredes “Pars” Munib
  • 86. Rashid Karid
  • 87. Taratingan “Adting” Abdullah
  • 88. Titing “Ting’ Jamil
  • 89. Tumimbang “Tommy” Nuska
  • 90. Usts. Kaiser “Ustaz” Jainal Abedin

Looking back, Camlian said he was glad to have been a part, in particular, of the training of the Moro youths for the defense of their people, religion, and culture, and in general the Bangsamoro struggle for self-determination.

Now presently, the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and its many factions, including the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), have returned to the fold of the law, to mainstream society through the 1976 Tripoli Agreement (TA), the 1996 Final Peace Agreement (FPA), and the 2014 Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB).

Al Camlian’s role in Bangsamoro struggle comes full circle

While the MNLF governed the now defunct Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) through Misuari and then Dr. Parouk S. Hussin, the MILF is currently governing the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) through Chief Minister Ahod Balawag “Al-Hajj Murad” Ebrahim from 2019 to 2025.

Only on Thursday, August 16, 2023, 102 MNLF and MILF members — men and women — qualified to join the Philippine National Police (PNP) as they were sworn in to the PNP in Parang, Maguindanao del Norte.

President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. reminded the new members of the PNP to serve and protect the country.

“The moment you take your oath, you pledge your allegiance not just to the Philippine National Police. You pledge your commitment and dedication to the public, to the Filipino people (whom) you promise to serve and protect,” the President emphasized.

Recall that the peace negotiations with the MNLF started with the father of the incumbent Chief Executive, President Ferdinand E. Marcos, Sr., through the 1976 Tripoli Agreement.

In a twist of fate, the Mindanao peace process has come full circle, with the younger Marcos now in his hands the full implementation of the Moro peace agreements.

And as fate would have it, Al Camlian, certainly a principal player in the Moro youths’ guerrilla training leading to what is now called Bangsamoro struggle for the right of self-determination, is also a significant player as member of the MILF Peace Panel in negotiations for the CAB, which concluded the MILF’s war for independence.

Let us hope and pray none of the violence of the past comes to revisit the Filipino nation arising from the MILF and the MNLF, or any Moro organization. In sha Allah (God willing)! — (✓)

Don't be shy, comments are welcome! Thank you.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: