There has not been any improvement in the peace process during President Duterte’s term, veteran journalist Manny Mogato said.

In the latest edition of’s podcast The Press Room, Mogato cited the lack of financial support from the national government to properly implement the Bangsamoro Transition Authority’s (BTA) planned reforms, particularly on corruption. 

“Malaking problema sa korapyson na nadiskubre ng MILF (Moro Islamic Liberation Front), pero ‘di nila magawang malinis yung sistema kasi ‘di nga sila binibigyan ng pondo,” he said.

[There is a huge problem on corruption that was discovered by the MILF, but they haven’t been able to address it due to lack of funds.]

Mogato also cited the shift in the position of the president on appointing left-leaning figures in various government positions, alleging Duterte was “held hostage” by the military.

“Hindi nagustuhan ito [left-leaning appointees] ng militar. So after a year, unti-unti nang inalis ni Pangulong Duterte. Parang na-hostage si Pangulong Duterte ng military… Kaya malabo nang magkaroon ng peace talks sa kanyang termino,” Mogato said. 

[The military didn’t approve (left-leaning appointees). So after a year, President Duterte gradually removed them. President Duterte seems to be held hostage by the military… That’s why it’s unlikely to have peace talks during his term.]

Calls to extend the BTA’s term to 2025 have been growing so that reforms could be properly implemented. But the Palace says the president is leaving it up to Congress to decide. Dunston Chi Esquivel