DAVAO CITY – North Cotabato Governor Emmylou Taliño Mendoza on Wednesday, January 30, said the grenade attack at a mosque in Zamboanga City and the twin bombings at the Jolo Cathedral was aimed at sowing division among the people of Mindanao.
“In strongest possible terms, I condemn these acts of terror which were clearly done to divide us and to destroy our way of life,” Mendoza said.
A grenade exploded inside a mosque in Zamboanga City killed at least 2 and injured 4 others on Wednesday, January 30. Three days earlier, a pair of bombs ripped through the Jolo Cathedral.
Both terrorist acts occured just as the first of two plebiscites were held to ratify the creation of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
Mendoza said it would be “heartbreaking and outrageous” if the people would let the incidents affect “our gains of prosperity” by getting swayed by the events, which she described as “dastardly acts of cowardice.”
“But we should not let this happen. As our collective history shows, and as we have done before, in the face of dangers and threats, we will look out for one another and we will stand together. We will not bow to fear and we will continue to live in peace,” Mendoza said.
At least 20 North Cotabato villages will be voting in the plebiscite for the ratification of the Bangsamoro Orhanic Law on February 6.
“So I call upon the tri-people of the Province of North Cotabato, Lumads, Christians and Muslims, to rally behind our collective resolve to continue living in an atmosphere of peace and without fear. All people of faith and of goodwill must recommit to respect and care for one another, to protect one another, and to prevent such violence,” she added. “Such acts of cowardice could never threaten who we are. We seek peace and continue to work together in keeping that peace. We will overcome. We will endure.” – Rappler.com
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