EU congratulates Philippines for peaceful plebiscite, BOL ratification
MANILA, Philippines — The European Union (EU) Delegation to the Philippines has expressed support on the recent ratification of the Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) as it congratulated the Philippine government for the “significant milestone” the country achieved.
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) on Friday night finished canvassing the votes for the BOL plebiscite in the areas of Mindanao and proclaimed that the BOL is “deemed ratified” after getting more than 1.5 million favorable votes.
“The EU Delegation wishes to congratulate the Philippine Government, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and the Commission on Elections for the generally peaceful conduct of the Bangsamoro Organic Law plebiscite on 21 January 2019 before the second phase to be held on 6 February 2019,” the EU said in a statement on Friday.
“The creation of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao is a significant milestone in the history of the Philippines. The European Union has been a staunch supporter of the Mindanao Peace Process throughout the years, expressing its political support, encouraging all sides to pursue a peaceful solution and providing substantial financial support for the process,” it added.
The EU also said that it would closely work with stakeholders in achieving a long-lasting peace in the Mindanao region.
The BOL ratification is considered as a factor in ending the five-decade-old Muslim rebellion in the region.
“The EU is prepared to continue to support the implementation of the Bangsamoro Organic Law and to work closely with the relevant stakeholders towards long-lasting peace, development and prosperity for the benefit of Mindanao and the Filipino people,” it said.
With the ratification of the BOL, the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao will be replaced by the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).
Another plebiscite is scheduled to happen on Feb 6, in the areas of Lanao del Norte, except Iligan City; the municipalities of Aleosan, Carmen, Kabacan, Midsayap, Pikit and Pigkawayan in North Cotabato province for their inclusion in the newly established BARMM. /jpv
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