Mindanao civic leader: Pray for the country, peaceful polls
MANILA, Philippines — Marawi civic leader Samira Gutoc has called on Filipinos to join in praying for the country, hours before the start of the official campaign period for national candidates.
Gutoc, a former member of the Bangsamoro Transition Commission who is running for senator under the Otso Diretso slate, also asked for prayers for peace in Mindanao.
“I urge our brothers and sisters from all walks of life, across all religions, to pray for our beloved Philippines. Tomorrow is the beginning of the 90-day campaign period for the midterm polls,” she said in a statement on Monday.
“While we pray for clean and honest elections, we also include the protection for our brothers and sisters in Mindanao in our prayers,” she added.
Recently, different provinces in Mindanao were rocked by explosions, allegedly perpetrated by different lawless groups.
Gutoc said that a lot of people in Mindanao — including those displaced by the Marawi siege in 2017 still live in fear,
“Ang ating mga kapatid sa Mindanao na nasa gitna ng pagbabago dala ng Bangsamoro Organic Law. Ang ilan sa kanila, partikular sa Jolo, Sulu ay may takot pa rin dahil sa mga naranasan nilang pagsabog doon,” she said.
(Our countrymen in Mindanao who are in the midst of changes due to the Bangsamoro Organic Law, particularly those in Jolo, are still gripped by fear because of the recent bombing.)
“Gayundin, huwag nating kalimutan ang mga taga-Marawi na hanggang ngayon ay kailangan pa rin ng tulong at atensyon. Ang hiling ko po ay sana walang ma-etsapwera ngayong eleksiyon, at ang tunay na boses ng mamamayan ang manaig,” she added.
(Let us also not forget residents of Marawi who until today need our attention and assistance. Let us not neglect the elections, and that the will and voice of the people will prevail.)
“These prayers and march may seem like simple gestures. But it can send a strong message that we can unite for our country and our people. Patunayan natin na ang mga Pilipino may pakialam, at gusto makialam,” Gutoc stressed.
(Let is prove that Filipinos care and want to get involved.)
“It is possible to join hands through prayers. Let us make peace win in this upcoming election season,” she pleaded. /gsg
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