BTA: Unity in Diversity


In lawmaking, lawyers have an edge over non-lawyers. Lawyers are trained on the subject. They know the how’s and the why’s in lawmaking. But an effective law is enacted by minds of varied expertise — not only lawyers.

The Bangsamoro Parliament in Focus

Masiding Noor Yahya

If there’s one thing good, or more, in the just enacted Bangsamoro Electoral Code (BEC), it’s because It was a product of different minds from various members of the Bangsamoro Parliament, not to mention the public consultations conducted across the areas of the Bangsamoro region.


When I said, lawyers have an edge over non-lawyers in lawmaking, I didn’t mean the enactment of laws is solely the thrust of lawyers. An effective law is a product of various experts in their respective fields. These include brilliant minds from the academe, the youth, the women, the traditional leaders, the Ulama and so forth.

In my hotel room the other night in Cotabato City, I had the opportunity to watch a segment of a Facebook Live clip of how the Bangsamoro Parliament deliberated on the floor the third and final reading of the Bangsamoro Electoral Code. Thanks to the official Facebook page of Atty. Randolph “Bong” Parcasio through which I linked in watching the session live online because his page appeared first in my FB wall.

MP Parcasio representing Misuari’s Moro National Liberation Front to the Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA).

I was impressed to see how young lawyers and other MPs tackled the presentation, comments, amendments, and divisions of the Body — so professionally done without any sign of discord as manifested by the overwhelming affirmative votes without opposition nor abstention in adopting the bill into an autonomy act.

The exceptional manifest of “Unity in Diversity” displayed here by the BTA members coming from different representations was incredible.

I wish to mention names of those MPs with amazing performances that night but I am not competent enough in remembering names and positions. But, I can sincerely say, they all do a good job for their people.


I had the opportunity to be invited to a press conference hosted by the Media Division of Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) on Thursday, March 9, 2023.

The BTA is the interim regional government of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) created by Republic Act No. 11054. It has executive and legislative powers over the region – the like of a parliamentary form of government.

I am grateful, the division chief, Ms. Jamaleah Lao Benito, still remembers me and thus included me among the invited media practitioners. She is an old friend way back since the defunct ARMM under then Regional Governor Mujiv Hataman who is now Basilan lone district representative.

Two prominent and brilliant members of the Parliament of BTA whose superb response gave the media the worth of their cents lead the press con. Bangsamoro Parliament Deputy Speaker Nabil A. Tan and Floor Leader Sha Elijah B. Dumama-Alba left no media query unanswered. Both are lawyers.

Tan and Alba responded to questions relative to the just approved Bangsamoro Electoral Code including, among others, the re-districting, anti-political dynasty, registration requirements and the 10,000 membership of a regional political party, Non-Moro Indigenous Peoples (IPs) and Settlers participations in the electoral process.

The speakers discussed so well the provisions in the Electoral code to safeguard the votes of our voting public. They also discussed the peculiarity of the incoming election from the past elections in the BARMM.


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