Foreign embassies required to get DFA clearance before donating to BARMM

Sofia Tomacruz
Foreign embassies required to get DFA clearance before donating to BARMM
Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr warns 'there'll be hell to pay' if foreign embassies bypass the Department of Foreign Affairs

MANILA, Philippines – European countries and other foreign embassies must seek clearance from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) before donating funds to the newly established Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), Foreign Secretary Teodoro “Teddyboy” Locsin Jr said on Thursday, September 12.

“[The] AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines) and DFA issued a warning to foreign embassies – especially the EU – not to f__k around dealing with the BARMM like it’s an independent state,” Locsin tweeted.

The top diplomat said any money offered to BARMM would have to first be vetted by the DFA with National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) “looking over its shoulder or there’ll be hell to pay.”


Locsin reiterated this stood for non-governmental organizations in the Philippines as well, saying “I don’t care if they are dedicated to Jesus and freedom.” (READ: EU required to get DFA clearance before donating to PH)

“It goes through DFA/NICA for f___k it,” he added.


Locsin made the remarks in response to a Twitter user who said it was “confusing” that the Bangsamoro region had ministers who “seem equivalent to department secretaries.”

The Bangsamoro region was put in place after the ratification of the historic Bangsamoro Organic Law in January 2019, which was the culmination of a peace deal signed between past administrations and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. It builds upon gains of previous Moro peace agreements since the 1970s. 

The Bangsamoro region, led by the interim Bangsamoro Transition Authority, now faces the task of building the foundations of a region fulfilling the Bangsamoro people’s vision for self-rule and lasting peace in Mindanao. (READ: Can’t afford to fail: Bangsamoro region weathers birth pains)

Among its major donors include the European Union and the Japan International Cooperation Agency. 

Duterte has repeatedly lambasted the EU for supposedly meddling in his bloody anti-drug campaign, rejecting at least P380 million (6.1 million euros) worth of donations from the EU as of January 2018. –

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Sofia Tomacruz

Sofia Tomacruz covers foreign affairs and is the lead reporter on the coronavirus pandemic. She also writes stories on the treatment of women and children. Follow her on Twitter via @sofiatomacruz. Email her at