LEGAZPI CITY (PIA) - The 9th Civil Military Operation (CMO) Kaagapay Batallion of the Philippine Army, takes a leap higher in bringing stronger linkages between Bicolano Muslim community and government agencies.
In April, the battalion conducted first Islamic leadership summit in Bicol. This aims to educate the participants on the importance of building a relationship with other communities and government institutions.
Battalion Executive Officer Major Eric A. Estidola said Thursday, that the conference is an avenue to prevent Muslims from Communist Party of the Philippine-New People's Army- National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF), Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) deceptions, recruitments and violent extremism.
To promote empowerment and participation on social security, Estidola adds that the army also intends to prepare them in humanitarian responses and disaster relief operations in times of calamities, as well as support their peace advocacies.
Call to action
Through Ugnayan sa Bicol, Estidola also lobbied Bicol Muslim's calls for strengthened Madaris education.
Nasroden Amin Datumanong Hassan, overall chairman of Albay Muslim Community said that they need a better cooperation with the Department of Education (DepEd) to ignite a fuller implementation of Arabic Language and Islamic Values Education program in the public schools.
He said that parents are not-well coordinated and students are discouraged to go to school.
Abdula Borres, leader of Muslim Community Daraga, on the other hand, said that they also need response trainings, tools and knowledge on disaster reduction and management.
Further, Hassan also said that the said summit greatly enlightened the community members about various government programs because "kami pong Muslim ay naidadawit sa mga terrorist groups na hindi naman kautusan ng Islam (we, Muslims are being tagged with terrorist groups which is not part of Qur'an teaching)." (PIA5)