Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Saturday called for calm and understanding in discussing the draft Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL), saying that statements warning of bloodshed if the BBL is not passed or is diluted are uncalled for.
Marcos appealed to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to refrain from issuing threats or warnings of war if the current draft version of the bill does not get Congress approval or is amended.
"Any effort to achieve peace can only be realised under an atmosphere of calm, co-operation and understanding. We have come this close to realizing the aspirations of our Muslim and Christian brothers. We should not let this opportunity slip [through] our hands," Marcos said.
Earlier, the senator warned the version of the Bangsamoro bill that the House of Representatives approved on first reading would "lead us to perdition."
"Armed conflict will ensue. Blood will be shed," Marcos said in a privilege speech in which he also announced that he would submit a substitute version of the measure that he said conforms to the Constitution and is more responsive to the needs of the region and its stakeholders.
Marcos, who chairs the local government committee that is conducting hearings on the draft BBL, also said yesterday that he was not out to dilute the measure but was doing his best to come up with an improved version.