53 Mindanao congressmen sign manifesto opposing Mindanao secession
53 Mindanao congressmen sign manifesto opposing Mindanao secession
53 Mindanao congressmen sign manifesto opposing Mindanao secession
by Ellicia Del Mundo21 February 2024
Screengrab from House of Representatives of the Philippines / Facebook page

Fifty-three out of 60 Mindanao congressmen signed a manifesto that firmly opposes the call for an independent Mindanao.

In a press conference on Wednesday, February 21, Lanao del Norte Rep. Khalid Dimaporo announced that 53 elected representatives of Mindanao signed a united manifesto for national integrity and development.

"53 out of 60 congressmen have signed this and we are one with the president that we don't need to move backward to the time of darkness in the region of Mindanao. What we need is progress and development. We are unified in that stand. I think the 19th Congress, it's very clear that we will not support a movement for an independent Mindanao," he said.

Dimaporo appeals to municipal mayors, city mayors, and barangay captains in Mindanao to reject the secession call.


"Do you really believe that we need to take two steps backward when our President [Ferdinand] 'Bongbong' Marcos [Jr.] has promised us progress, [and] is very sincere in ensuring that the peace agreement is being achieve in the Bangasamoro region para tahimik na ang communities natin?" he remarked.

The Lanao del Norte lawmaker hopes that the call for Mindanao independence will be shut down "by all levels of government and leaders in the Mindanao region."

In the signed united manifesto, Mindanao congressmen said their stance was "deeply rooted" in their "belief in national unity, the power of inclusive development, and the promise of a peaceful, progressive future for all Filipinos, including indigenous people of Mindanao."


They commended Marcos' administration for ensuring that "progress reaches every corner of Mindanao" through infrastructure, agricultural revitalization, and economic empowerment.

The Mindanao lawmakers also conveyed their "unwavering commitment" to the country's integrity and unity and emphasized the "importance of upholding the Constitution and rule of law."

Earlier this month, Bangsamoro Chief Minister Ahod Ebrahim and four other provincial governors issued separate statements turning down the Mindanao independence proposed by former President Rodrigo Roa Duterte.

Marcos had already appealed to stop the calls to secede Mindanao from the Philippines, stressing that this proposal "is doomed to fail."

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