Nur Misuari - MNLF founding chair. (Photo by Allan Defensor)

“I want peace for our people,” Nur Misuari, the chairman of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) emphatically said when he visited Cebu over the weekend. He was asked on the developments of a supposed creation of a peace panel with Malacanang to tackle federalism as a centerpiece of a peace accord which he seeks to be obtained during the incumbency of President Rodrigo R. Duterte.

He recently met with the President who ordered to suspend the implementation of an arrest warrant against the MNLF founding chair, a privilege akin to providing a safe conduct pass while peace talks are ongoing. President Duterte told Misuari to organize a five-man peace pannel to meet with their government counterpart to tackle a separate peace agreement after the Bangsa Moro Organic Law (BOL) that was agreed upon with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

Misuari is confident of materializing the peace deal as he trust President Duterte whom he calls his “brother.” “He (Duterte) is a man with a sense of humanity really, nag dovetail ang aming isipan,” Misuari said. “I want change. This is the sense of humanity that is dictating to us, to our conscience. That is why I am advocating this,” he further explained.

The MNLF Chair has attended the summit of the Visayas Federal Movement in Lapu-Lapu City organized by Engr. Rolando Patalinjug, a mayoralty candidate on the May 13 polls. Asked on his impression on Patalinjug who sat with him in the presscon in a local hotel, Misuari has good words for his host. “I am honored to sit with him, side by side with him. I am so happy and very grateful to him.

He is a very gentle fellow.” Patalinjug said aside from seeking the Mayoralty post, he is also an advocate for federalism. Misuari is facing arrest for the charges of rebellion and crimes against humanity due to the Zamboanga siege in 2013 that claimed at least 200 lives.

He also had pending graft charges in the Sandiganbayan for alleged educational materials bogus deal when he was the Governor of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) in 2000./AAJ