SEN. Miriam Defensor-Santiago on Thursday said basis of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) is unconstitutional but added that she is still willing to listen to proponents of the proposed law and see if they could change her views.
According to Santiago, chairman of the Senate Committee on Constitutional Amendments and Revision of Codes, the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro is unconstitutional because it violates the principle of constitutional supremacy.
She pointed out that the agreement establishes not a mere autonomous region as provided for by the Constitution but a sub-state, which will exercise certain sovereign powers, an authority reserved only for the central government.
Santiago said her committee will hold hearings on constitutional concerns surrounding the proposed law and that she will invite the proponents and other experts to the proceedings.
“I would like to hear what the proponents of the Bangsamoro Basic Law will have to say during the hearings. Let’s see if they can change my mind,” she added.
The BBL is being heard by the committee on local government, the primary committee, headed by Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr.; and the committee on peace and unification headed by Sen. Teofisto Guingona 3rd. Marcos’ committee still has two more hearings in Mindanao–in Zamboanga and Sulu scheduled for February.
Santiago has set her committee hearings on January 26 and February 2.