MILF leader Ghadzali Jaafar dies, 75

MILF leader Ghadzali Jaafar dies, 75

March 13, 2019 0 By Mindanao Sun
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Zamboanga City – The Philippine Center for Islam and Democracy (PCID) said in a statement that the passing of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) First Vice Chairman for Political Affairs and Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC) Chairman Ghadzali Jaafar was a big loss for the newly-created Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

His family said the MILF leader, 75, died of cardiac arrest about 1 a.m. Wednesday, March 13 at a private hospital in Davao City after weeks of confinement at the hospital.

Jaafar was buried at 11:35 a.m. in accordance to Islamic tradition at his farm in Pigkalagan, Sultan Kudarat in Maguindanao. About 6,000 people had gathered and witnessed the final rites of the former rebel leader-turned-government official.

Jaafar, a Maguindanaoan, was survived by his five children.

He was the First Vice Chair of the Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) and was the chair of the now-defunct BTC.

Jaafar was considered as one of the pillars in the struggle for an independent Bangsamoro.

PCID President Amina Rasul said Jaafar has strongly believed that peace can only be achieved if the Bangsamoro government will work to meet the expectations of the greater majority of the Bangsamoro people, be it Muslims or non-Muslims.

Jaafar had served as the first chairman of MILF panel when peace negotiations started in 1997 which resulted to a ceasefire agreement with the government.

He had also served as the BTC chairperson that drafted the Bangsamoro Basic Law in 2017 and oversaw the progress until it was passed as RA 11054 or the Organic Law for BARMM in July 2018, Rasul said.

Even though his health deteriorated, Jaafar still joined the campaign for the approval and ratification of the BOL.

He was appointed as the speaker of the Bangsamoro parliament last February.

Although the MILF leader had not lived to see the inaugural session of the BARMM, his contributions will long be remembered and treasured, Rasul said. (Ely Dumaboc)

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