Malacañang on Thursday expressed confidence that the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) can be defended once questions on its constitutionality are raised before the Supreme Court.
Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the version of the bill that it endorsed to Congress had been carefully thought of, bearing in mind the possibility of a court challenge.
“It is important that the provisions of the Bangsamoro Basic Law follow the Constitution.
It is up to Congress to decide on the fate of the BBL. According to our legal processes, if somebody wants to question the legality of the law after it gets enacted, they can go and file a petition with the Supreme Court,” he explained in Filipino.
According to him, each provision of the BBL has been studied and made to conform with the Constitution and that President Benigno Aquino 3rd himself had made it sure that the draft submitted by framers of the BBL would be constitutional.
Besides, Coloma said, the measure, once passed, would be subjected to a referendum, where the people in the Bangsamoro will vote on whether to accept it.
“The present deliberations in Congress [are]in accordance with the timetable set by the legislative leadership,” he added.
Reacting to the approval of the bill at the ad hoc committee level, Coloma said the discussions were “objective” and that changes were made based on lawmakers’ exchanges.
Meanwhile, the government’s chief peace negotiator Miriam Coronel-Ferrer conveyed her appreciation to the members of the House of Representatives ad hoc committee on the BBL for exerting “due diligence” in their deliberations.
Ferrer noted that substantive elements of the proposed law were retained in response to a call of the Bangsamoro people for genuine autonomy.
“We have been monitoring the proceedings in Congress since Monday and we definitely appreciate that our honorable representatives have exerted all efforts and and responded to the call of the people to draft a BBL consistent with the CAB [Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro] and in accordance [with]the 1987 Philippine Constitution,” she said.