Misuari still in Sulu, says ARMM gov
MANILA, Philippines – Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Gov Mujiv Hataman said Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) founding chairman Nur Misuari is still in Sulu.
Hataman said government and security forces are working to track down Misuari as the Zamboanga crisis enters its final stage. While Zamboanga is outside of ARMM, Hataman said he has been helping out in negotiations and the relief mission in the crisis.
“We have a report that [Misuari] is still in Sulu but not in the mainland, in an island. He is mobile,” Hataman said after the ARMM budget hearing at the Senate on Monday, September 23.
In the interview, Hataman also said he talked to some MNLF members who surrendered and told him that Misuari supposedly promised them P10,000 and a firearm each in exchange for going to Zamboanga to declare the independence of the Bangsamoro Republik.
“Sinasabi nila hindi nila akalain at sabi lang ni Misuari pumunta sila doon kasi may sahod sila from UN. Kasi pag pumunta sila sa Zamboanga at maitayo nila ang bandera nila at magdeklara ang UN ng kanilang independence and at the same time meron silang sahod na P10,000 per person, per participant na naka-ATM pa.”
(They are saying they did not expect what happened in and Misuari only told them to go to Zamboanga because they will get payment from the UN. Because if they go to Zamboanga and they raise the flag and the UN [recognizes] their independence, then they will have P10,000 per person through ATM.)
Hataman said before the crisis, a certain Daniel Xavier went to Sulu and presented himself as an American representative of the United Nations. Yet the Office of the Presidential Adviser of the Peace Process was able to confirm from the UN that it had no such representative.
“Ang sabi ni Daniel Xavier at pinapakilala ni Misuari na UN representative na pinadala ni [UN Secretary General] Ban Ki-Moon. Nagpunta ng Sulu si Daniel Xavier so ‘yun ang pinaniniwalaan ng mga tao na may UN representative.”
(Daniel Xavier introduced himself and Misuari also introduced him as a UN representative sent by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. He went to Sulu and people believed that there was a UN representative.)
Hataman said the UN twice issued a statement denying that Xavier was its representative.
The ARMM governor said Xavier was actually from either Tacloban and Bacolod, and allegedly even faces an estafa case.
“He’s not an MNLF member. He’s not from Mindanao. He’s not Muslim,” Hataman said.
Attempts at ARMM spillover
Hataman said there are attempts at a spillover of the violence to ARMM.
“For example in Basilan, that’s not MNLF but Abu Sayyaf is acting in solidarity with the MNLF. But what Abu Sayyaf is doing it an act of terror, not in connection with the peace talks.”
Hataman said the violence reported in North Cotabato on Monday was not related to the MNLF but perpetrated by the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, a breakaway group of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). MILF is in turn a breakway group of the MNLF.
“This is not our jurisdiction but we are concerned because it is near Maguindanao. The BIFF is also from Maguindanao,” he said.
Maguindanao is part of ARMM. – Rappler.com