Cotabato City (June 18, 2015) – Regional Governor Mujiv Hataman of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) urged his constituents to utilize the observance of the Islamic Holy Month of Ramadan to achieve peace in Mindanao.
In a statement, Gov. Hataman extended his warmest greetings of peace and prosperity to all Muslims as they observe the Holy Month of Ramadan. Gov. Hataman reiterated that Ramadan is the “time when we strengthen our commitment to lasting peace and development in Mindanao through fasting and prayers.”
Ramadan is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar, or the Hijri calendar, based on the lunar cycle, which began in AD 622 when the Prophet Muhammad migrated from Mecca to Medina.
“This is the time where we renew our devotion and reflect on our faith as Muslims who are guided by the teachings of the Holy Qur’an and the Almighty and merciful Allah,” the governor said.
During the fast, Muslims abstain from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk. Fasting is one of the five pillars of Islam. The other acts of worship are the ‘shahadah’, which is the declaration of faith; ‘salat’, the five daily prayers; ‘zakat’, or alms giving; and ‘hajj’, the pilgrimage to Mecca.
The ARMM government has adjusted the working hours of Muslim employees, which started onThursday, July 18, from 7:00 AM to 3:00 PM. This schedule will last until the Eid al-Fitr or “feast of breaking the fast” on either July 17, or July 18.
Meanwhile, about 60 food and non-food exhibitors showcased goods and services inside the ARMM Compound in Cotabato City. Secretary Sakiran Hajan of the ARMM’s Trade and Industry department, which serves as this year’s lead agency of the Ramadan Food and Trade Fair, said the event is not exclusive for Muslims.
There are series of activities lined up for the month-long celebration, which include Qur-an reading, Islamic symposia, cultural presentation, free Iftar (fast-breaking) and nightly events sponsored by different ARMM line agencies.
“Let us take this opportunity to spread the message of love, compassion, and peace among us and to our non-Muslim brothers and sisters in Mindanao, the Philippines, and across the world,” Gov. Hataman said. (Bureau of Public Information)