Mangudadatu appeals to Duterte to halt military ops vs BIFF

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 21 2019 03:05 PM

Maguindanao 2nd District Rep. Esmael "Toto" Mangudadatu and President Rodrigo Duterte. File

MANILA- Maguindanao 2nd District Rep. Esmael "Toto" Mangudadatu has appealed for a temporary halt in military operations against the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters in his province.

In a letter sent to President Rodrigo Duterte, Mangudadatu said the operations already displaced thousands of Maguindanaons.

“(It) destroyed millions worth of crops and livestock and not to mention, loss of [innocent] lives who are caught in the crossfire,” he said.

Mangudadatu, a former governor of Maguindanao, also requested high-ranking officials of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front to convince the BIFF to lay down their arms or “to abandon the kind of Islamic ideology they are preaching."

"In this way, it will prevent further damage to crops, livestock and lost of innocent lives," Mangudadatu said in his letter.

The BIFF, a breakaway group from the MILF, is active in Maguindanao and parts of central Mindanao.

Mangudadatu also submitted the letter to Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea who has yet to respond to ABS-CBN News' request for comment on the lawmaker's plea.