Muslim community in Baguio vows to protect city from terrorism

BAGUIO CITY – National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) director Abdullah Macarimpas stressed “the Muslim community here is working side by side with Baguio City residents to protect the city against criminality and terrorism.”

Sinar Association president Samsodin Monib on Monday reiterated the statement of Macarimpas adding that “next to Marawi, the birthplace of their children is Baguio City.”

Earlier, the Sinar Association sponsored a forum attended by key city officials and NCMF at the Baguio City Multi-purpose hall carrying the theme, “Muslim on Peace and Harmony.”

Monib said the forum was organized to shed light on issues associating the Muslim community with terrorism and drugs and to put a stop to those who are emphatically condemning them as terrorists.

In the forum, Baguio City Mayor Mauricio Domogan said the participants must stop segregating themselves from other tribes, referring to all tribes living in Baguio, including the Muslim community.

Domogan said the violation of one is not a violation of all, in reference to terrorist attacks where people jump into a conclusion blaming the Muslims.

“Let us preemptively work together as one family regardless of tribe, religious affiliation or belief and help the police in monitoring who continue to promote peace and otherwise,” Domogan said.

Domogan said the Baguio City Police Office (BCPO) apprehended alleged members of the New People’s Army (NPA) who were responsible in the burning of two Philex Mines trucks in Itogon, Benguet, last week.

Reacting to the statement of Domogan, Macarimpas said, ” it has been proven that Muslims were not involved in the said incident in Itogon, we cannot allow any terroristic activity to happen in Baguio because Baguio is our home.”

Monib said the association and its members are happy with the result of the forum because of the attendance and the response they received from concerned officials.

“We waited for this opportunity for a long time and we are glad that finally, it happened,” Monib said. (PNA) FPV/JBL/MerriamSdelRosario (STRINGER)