12 April 2015
The Blood of Our Heroes
Dr. Renato T. Oliveros, Executive Vice President
The blood of our heroes is the seed of the nation. This is what Mamapasapano is all about. Soul-searching for every Filipino. Despite the pain and suffering we can still look back at it and find a stronger nation. Mamapasapano has hit the nerve of every citizen, and brought us back home to who we are as a nation and our identity as Filipinos. Can the MILF proudly say – that they ARE Filipinos too? Is Bangsamoro as an identity different and apart from the Filipino identity?
Mamasapano has also made us study with due diligence the details of the Bangsamoro Basic Law. Are there sections in the law that could eventually lead to separatism? We cannot deny that the Mamapasano incident has derailed the BBL. In its current form, it definitely will not be passed if a national plebiscite were held today. MILF, this is your chance to show to the nation that you are for peace. Be one amongst other Moro groups, lumad(s), IPs, and stakeholders --who this time want a voice in the peace process. MILF, fear not, for the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) has already been signed. Its guiding principles will remain the backbone of a reconstituted BBL as the Government's Peace Summit will revisit the BBL.
It is here in the Philippines, even with its Spanish heritage and nomenclatures, that one can realize one's potential to be the best Muslim or Christian that one can be. One recognizes and affirms that the Philippines is the nation where he was born, lives and can fulfill his God-given right as a citizen. Being a Filipino is not an exclusive Christian identity. A Muslim can be a Filipino. They are not two contradictory identities, rather, these are and should be complementary identities. One's Muslim identity supersedes other cultural, ethnic, political and social identities. On the other hand, being a Filipino affirms that it is in the Philippines that a Muslim is free to practice one's religion as enshrined in the constitution. It is here in the Philippines that a Muslim can realize one's potential to be a true and best Muslim possible as well as provide for his/her children's future.
For the PLM Graduates of 2015, someday soon all Filipinos will stand shoulder to shoulder--- Muslims, Christians, Lumad, IPs, atbp. We pray that it will happen in your lifetime. Be part of nation-building as we embrace the Rizalian dictum: Pro Deo et Patria — For God and Country.