Sulu holds forum on federalism, autonomy
SULU – The Sulu provincial government in partnership with Sulu State College Faculty Association and Institute for Autonomy and Governance recently held a forum on Federalism, Autonomy and Mindanao and the Sulu Peace Process.
Among those who attended and participated in the forum were deans and professors of universities and private colleges, civil society groups and heads of government agencies, including provincial and local government officials.
Datu’ Shahbandar Dr Sakur Tan, the special envoy of the Royal Council of the Sulu Sultanate, was also invited to speak at the forum. He shared his insights on the fundamental flaws of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, the prospects of federalism and his vision for Sulu, where he also served as congressman, governor and vice governor.
Acting Governor Nurunisah Tan the forum was aimed at educating the public on several important issues, especially on Presi- dent Duterte’s proposal to shift from presidential form of government to federal.
“Changes are indeed coming and we should not be caught ill-prepared or I'll-informed. In a democratic atmosphere, the voices of all sectors should be heard. We hope today we can be accorded opportunities to exchange ideas that will be enlightening and productive,” she said.
Lawyer Benedicto Bacani, Executive Director of the Institute for Autonomy and Governance, who was among the resource speakers, said the forum was a good venue to inform the people on how federalism works. “Pagaralan natin para mabuo ang tamang solusyon. What will be the implication of federalism in Sulu? Is there inclusivity in federalism? We must see through these political developments,” he said.
Also those who spoke at the forum were government peace consultant and lawyer Jose Lorena, political analyst Malou Tiquia, among others.
Acting Sulu Governor Nurunisah Tan poses with resource speakers following the forum on federalism and autonomy. (Sulu Provincial Government Photo)