Philippine President Benigno S. Aquino III will personally ask local leaders in southern Philippines to help his administration in pushing for a Bangsamoro political entity, a senior official said Sunday.
Aquino is set to go to southern city of Davao this week to attend the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Summit, said Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr.
"The main agenda (of his trip) is to encourage the local leaders in ARMM areas to cooperate and help in pushing for the peace process which we hope will end up in the creation of the Bangsamoro political entity," he told state-run radio station.
A Bangsamoro political entity would be formed once the people in the envisioned core territories including ARMM voted for their inclusion in a plebiscite before 2016, he said.
Coloma explained that the ARMM has a "transitional role" in order for the envisioned political entity to be successful.
The Bangsamoro political entity will replace the existing ARMM based on the peace agreement between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), the largest Muslim rebel group in the country.
"President also wants to know if the local executives have concerns that the national government needs to address," Coloma added.