It is understandable that when the Moro Islamic Liberation Front chose its representatives to the Bangsamoro Transition Authority those who had spent the best years of their lives serving the struggle for self-determination would be prioritized. Having shown loyalty to the cause through thick and thin, these individuals are expected to prove their worth as the MILF leaves the war front and enters the halls of governance.
However, loyalty alone could not ensure a smooth transition until such time that elections are held to allow the people to choose the leaders that will run the new autonomous region. The MILF should consider putting in young Turks who possess both the enthusiasm and the skills needed in running a government. With due respect to the pioneers of the MILF, its ranks never lack for well-schooled talents who are adept in management and public administration.
The elders, who had served the revolution well, can provide wisdom and serve as inspiration to the generations after them. But it is the zeal and capacity of the young blood to learn easily that will help the Bangsamoro adapt to and benefit from mind-boggling changes and developments now sweeping the world.
Three years is too short a transition for a region facing complex problems created by conflict and other factors. As the prime mover of the interim regional government, the MILF must see the message writ large across the Bangsamoro sky – tap the energies of the youth – or risk becoming irrelevant after 2022.
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