The establishment of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), through the Bangsamoro Organic Law in 2019, came with it the challenge of ensuring peace in the region. In order to address these challenges, the Ministry of Public Order and Safety (MPOS) plays a key role in this commitment, adopting the principles of reconciliation and mediation in settling disputes, and alternative dispute resolution.
The creation of the Ministry of Public Order and Safety is based on Republic Act 11054 also known as OLBARMM, an “Act Providing for the Organic Law for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, Repealing for the Purpose Republic Act No. 6734, Entitled “An Act Providing for An Organic Act for the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao,” As Amended by Republic Act No. 9054, Entitled “An Act to Strengthen and Expand the Organic Act for the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao”. A plebiscite was conducted on January 21, 2019 and majority of ARMM voters chose to approve the Republic Act 11054.
On January 25, 2019, the National Plebiscite Board of Canvassers (NPBOC) announced the official results of the plebiscite declaring the BOL was “deemed ratified.”
Public Order and safety are stated in Article XI, Section 2 and Article XVI Section 8 of RA 11054.
On October 28, 2020, the Bangsamoro Transition Authority unanimously approved by 58 members the Bangsamoro Autonomy Act No. 13 known as the Bangsamoro Administrative Code.
The Bangsamoro Administrative Code (BAC) is promulgated to prescribe the structural, functional, and procedural principles and rules of governance of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
The creation of the Ministry of Public Order was stated in Title X: Public Order and Safety of the said code. Based on the code’s Title X, section 2. Mandate:
“The Ministry of Public order and Safety (MPOS) shall be responsible for public safety. It shall have coordinative function with offices and agencies that maintain public order and safety in the region, and shall perform functions relating to peace building, reconciliation and unification of all the peoples in the region.”
Stated in the code (Title X, section 3), MPOS has the following powers and functions:
- Serves as member of the Regional Peace and Order Council;
- Establishes proper coordinating mechanism with the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police, National Police Commission, Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, Coast Guard, Bureau of Fire Protection, and other law enforcement agencies or offices in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region to enhance the safety and security of the region;
- Monitors and evaluates the prevailing peace and security situation in the region and submit report thereon to the Office of the Chief Minister;
- Establishes a community based early warning/ response and conflict reporting system relating to public order and safety;
- Formulates and implements programs, projects, and activities relating to religious tolerance, preventing and countering violent extremism;
- Conducts programs, project, and activities relating to promotion of peace and sustainable development, reconciliation, unification, and peaceful co-existence;
- Formulates and implements policies and programs for the effective settlement of family feuds (rido) and other horizontal conflicts in the region, as well as for the prevention of the recurrence of such conflicts;
- Implements laws, policies, programs, and projects of the BARMM concerning peace, public order and safety;
- And performs such other functions as may be prescribed by law thereafter or as may be assigned by the Chief Minister.
In order to guarantee inclusivity among major actors in the Ministry’s planning process, it has conducted strategic and operational planning. The results of workshops were adopted in the Ministry’s programs in hope that the security sector, project stakeholders, and the immediate beneficiaries of the Ministry will recognize, support and contribute to the Vision, Mission and Goal of the ministry.