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Duterte appeals to Muslims to support govt peace initiatives

MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur, Dec. 1 – President Rodrigo Duterte appealed to the Muslim people in Mindanao to help him in building a peaceful nation.

“I am pleading to my Moro brothers and sisters to please help us. If you want, I will restore the barter trade. I will open Zamboanga again. I will introduce reforms not only to make the government happy but also to make you happy because it is the function of the government to make its citizens happy,” Duterte said when he visited the military tactical command post in Butig town on Wednesday, November 30.

The President particularly pleaded to all Moro political leaders, men of influence, and scholars to continue talking to the government and sort out solutions to address the problems in Mindanao. He even vowed to prioritize Mindanao and pour aid to Muslim areas to improve their living conditions.

President Duterte is also open for the adoption of Shariah Law in some areas where it will be suitable as long as it is fair for both the Muslims and the Christians. He further said that his administration will begin next year the structure for federalism but they will set aside the Constitutional provisions which are not acceptable.

He said the only concern is on how to come up with a peaceful community in the meantime.

However, President Duterte said he will not wage war with fellow Filipinos despite the recent attacks against government troops in the area.

“I do not want to wage war. It is very easy to start a war but how to stop it and heal the wounds is difficult,” he added.

The President visited Lanao del Sur to boost the morale of government troops fighting against the Maute group in Butig town. He also conducted a command briefing with military officials and commanders under the army’s 103rd Infantry Brigade.


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