What’s next after the April 30, 2014 Summit on Cordillera Autonomy?
The Cordillera Congressmen plan to establish a committee of a whole, which would keep the ball rolling regarding Cordillera Autonomy. This was according to Ifugao Representative TeodoroBaguilat Jr. who served as a speaker during the workshop on developing brands and messages on Cordillera Autonomy last May 12-13, 2014, which was sponsored by RDC-CAR.
“There is no discussion yet on whether we should refile HB 5595 or an amended version, but we are moving towards the need for a draft bill and to consult our constituents on the bill,” said Baguilat.
Accordingly, some Congressmen are not comfortable with Article XVI Section 163 (b) which states that, “The provinces or city which vote unfavorably in the plebiscite shall revert to their mother region prior to the establishment of the Cordillera Administrative Region.” They are leaning towards continued accession which was put forward during the Regional Summit.
Continued accession means that provinces/cities that will opt for a “No” during a plebiscite may join the region later on. This was the case in the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), where only Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi agreed to be a part of ARMM during the first plebiscite on November 1989.In a second plebiscite on September 2001, Basilan and the Islamic City of Marawi joined the said autonomous region.
Baguilat advised that the RDC should continue with its activities to complement whatever the Congressmen will be doing in order to ensure success in this pursuit for autonomy.
by Christine Mamuyac, SPCAR