By Martin Sadongdong
The Philippine National Police (PNP) extended its greetings of peace and goodwill to all Filipino Muslims as the country celebrates the start of the Holy Month of Ramadan Monday.
Police General Oscar Albayalde, PNP Chief, said it is an opportune time to “reinforce unity and solidarity” among Muslims, Christians and other Filipinos of different faiths towards the ultimate goal of just and lasting peace not only in Mindanao but across the country.
“Let me emphasize that the PNP fully supports all the government’s peace initiatives in Mindanao thru the newly-ratified Bangsamoro Organic Law that constituted the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM),” Albayalde said.
The country’s top cop expressed hope that the ratification of BOL will eventually address the root causes of poverty in the predominantly Muslim areas in Mindanao.
“We must put an end to violence and bloodshed so that lasting peace will prevail in Mindanao and government can harness all its resources towards the socio-economic development of all Muslim areas,” Albayalde stressed.
He also assured the public that all police officers and units in the Muslim areas of Mindanao and elsewhere continue to protect the people and communities from criminal elements to uphold law and order.
Muslims around the world started the Ramadan fasting on Monday which serves as one of the five pillars of Islam.
The month-long celebration of Ramadan includes Muslims immersing themselves in reading the Quran, praying, and doing dhikr which is a form of praise to the Almighty Creator.
It culminates with Eid al Fitr where Muslims gather to pray and celebrate the successful observance of the holy event.