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The Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) mandates a regional parliamentary system for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM). The Philippines has limited experience of the parliamentary system by way of a modified presidential-parliamentary form of government in 1981 until 1986 when it was abolished after the EDSA revolution. The Regional Autonomous Government for the Bangsamoro established in 1989 mirrored the national presidential system of government with the Regional Governor exercising executive powers and a Regional Legislative Assembly holding legislative powers.
The current Organic Law of the BARMM, R.A. 11054 or the Organic Law for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region, has mandated a regional parliamentary system and vested the powers of government in the Parliament which shall exercise the powers of government and elect a Chief Minister who shall exercise authority on its behalf (Art. VII, Sec. 2). The Parliament shall be composed of 80 members, 50% are representatives of political parties elected through a system of proportional representation based on the Bangsamoro territorial jurisdiction; 40% of the members from single member parliamentary districts, and reserved seats and sectoral representatives shall constitute at least 10% of the members of the Parliament.
The Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) composed of 80 members appointed by the President has been constituted to plan, lay down policies, and implement transition to the regular BARMM government in 2022. The BTA is the interim government during the transition. Legislative and executive powers of BARMM during the transition are vested in the BTA. During the transition period, executive authority shall be exercised by the Interim Chief Minister while legislative authority shall be exercised by the BTA. The BTA is mandated to enact priority legislations that include the Bangsamoro Administrative Code.
The Bangsamoro Administrative Code is a critical piece of legislation that will establish the rules and structure of governance in the BARMM as a regional parliamentary form of government. Considering the parliamentary system as “novel” in national and regional governance, members of the BTA particularly those belonging to the committee that will draft the Administrative Code need to broaden and sharpen their understanding of how best to organize and structure the parliamentary system in the BARMM cognizant of international and national experiences, the Philippine constitution, national laws, and the BOL.
The objectives of the workshop are:
- Equip BTA members, particularly members of the Committee on Administrative Code, with knowledge and skills in drafting the rules for organizing the BARMM parliamentary government;
- Broaden understanding of relevant international and national systems and practices that can serve as models and lessons;
- Sharpen understanding of BTA members on the breadth and limits of regional parliamentary system under the BOL, national laws, and the Philippine constitution;
- Raise capacities of BTA members in effective processes and structures of a parliament; and
- Raise understanding of BTA members in crafting public policies for effective and efficient public administration.