CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – The grand imam of Marawi City’s largest mosque denounced Senator Robin Padilla’s sponsorship of a same-sex civil union bill as he declared his and his followers’ withdrawal of support from the actor-turned-politician.
Marawi Grand Mosque Imam Alim Abdumajeed Djamla said his group was strongly condemning Padilla’s sponsorship of Senate Bill No. 449, a proposed measure to institutionalize civil unions of same-sex couples and establish their legal rights and obligations.
Padilla, who has converted to Islam, was among the favored candidates for Senate seats in predominantly Muslim Marawi City and Lanao del Sur.
He ranked second in the May senatorial race in Marawi, receiving 45,809 votes in the city, next to Maranao civil society group leader Samira Gutoc who garnered 47,640. Padilla, however, topped the May senatorial elections in Lanao del Sur, including Marawi City, garnering 323,326 votes.
The controversial bill proposes to give same-sex couples the right to obtain valid licenses for a civil union and be afforded inheritance and adoption rights, a proposal long frowned upon by religious and conservative groups.
“I regret to inform all Muslims in general and the Muslims in the Philippines that I and those who follow me have withdrawn our support for Senator Robin Padilla and strongly condemn his sponsorship of Same-Sex Marriage Bill No. 449 (or the) Civil Union Acts (sic) in the Senate,” Djamla said.
Djamla said the proposed measure is considered immoral by all religions, haram (forbidden) based on Islamic laws, and is “tantamount to disbelief (Kufr).”
The move to legalize same-sex marriage has long faced strong opposition in the predominantly Roman Catholic Philippines.
Fr. Jerome Secillano, executive secretary of the Episcopal Commission on Public Affairs of the influential Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines, told Dobol B TV in an interview that the state cannot force the Church to accept the proposal even if it becomes law because it is against its fundamental teachings.
A Social Weather Stations survey in 2018 showed that 61% of Filipinos were opposed to any proposal to legalize same-sex marriages. – Rappler.com