Today is the culmination of years of intensive peace talks and marks a new beginning for us, a historic deal that will chart the future of the Moro people. We are grateful to President Benigno Aquino III and MILF Chairman Al Haj Murad Ibrahim for showing real political courage in moving the peace process forward.
The peace agreement should help heal the historical injustices of the past as it gives way for a political setup that will allow the Moro people to exercise self-governance and contribute to the growth and prosperity of this nation.
A week ago, we commemorated the anniversary of the event that served as turning point in the Bangsamoro struggle – the Jabidah massacre. It was a tragedy that united the Moro people, regardless of background and affiliation.
We put premium on history and the narratives of our ancestors who fought and shed blood for the cause of their people. While we try to look back to remind our people of our cause, we are moving forward to build a brighter future for our homeland and for this nation.
For more than two years now, the ARMM government was able to set a new horizon for the Bangsamoro people. One that does not fail, one that holds the aspiration of its people for a genuine self-rule.
And as the progress of reforming ARMM as an institution continues, we remain true to our commitment that this effort is an integral part in laying down the foundation for the new Bangsamoro entity.
Much remains to be done. The Comprehensive Agreement heralds a new challenge to the Bangsamoro, a new struggle that we must face as one.