MANILA, Philippines – President Benigno Aquino III called for solidarity and urged all Filipinos to protect the sacrifices of those who helped build the nation, as he joined the Muslim community in observing Eid’l Adha or the Feast of Sacrifice.
“Let solidarity, tranquility, and clarity of purpose prevail over you on this solemn occasion, as you ruminate on Ibrahim’s tale that reveals unwavering, empowering faith and the tenacity of the human spirit,” Aquino said in his message on Friday, September 25.
He added: “It inspires strength and courage in the face of doubt, challenges, and despair, especially to those bereft of hope, stricken by tragedy and the disquiet of communities long neglected by those in power.”
The President expressed hope that the narrative of the Prophet Ibrahim – who demonstrated his willingness to follow Allah’s command to sacrifice his son Ismail – will “reinforce our bonds as we work together to fulfill our mission of perpetuating positive change in society.”
He added, “May this day likewise remind us of the stories of sacrifice upon which we built our nation; we owe this era of peace to those who readily laid down their lives to secure a better future for their fellowmen.”
Aquino also took a swipe at administration foes, whom he said “tainted” the memory of those who sacrificed their lives to build the nation.
“Never will we let their honor be tainted by mistrust, viciousness, and malice sowed by those who seek to hinder us on our march along Daang Matuwid (Straight Path),” he said.
The President earlier declared September 25 as a regular holiday, to commemmorate Eid’l Adha, one of two greatest feasts of Islam, as provided by Republic Act No. 9849.
The National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) had earlier recommended to the President that the observance of Eid’l Adha In the Philippines be on September 25, based on the Islamic Calendar and the declaration made by Saudi Arabia’s highest religious authority.
The NCMF’s initial recommendation was to observe the occasion on September 24. – Rappler.com
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