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Macaayong: MSU Campus safe, secured, peaceful amidst Marawi strife

File photo of MSUS President Macaayong during the 2017 Mindanao Peace
Summit last March this year in Davao.

By PHIL PA-ALAN
Iligan City, Philippines
June 4, 2017

Dr. Habib Watamama Macaayong, president of the Mindanao State University System (MSUS) disclosed recently that despite the bombing in downtown Marawi, the MSU main campus is not affected by the fighting between the Maute/Abu Sayaf/ISIS armed group. 

In an interview, Macaayong told this writer that the university security forces are on red alert in safeguarding the campus and in protecting the student to make the campus peaceful with the help of the military and police forces.

President Macaayong said, “At present 98% of the students have left the campus as we gave them leeway to have their vacation."

He said the university also provided them cash assistance for transportation so they could move to Iligan City, although, he said, a few remaining students numbering less than fifty will be provided with transportation assistance to facilitate their movement to Iligan City for safety. 

Macaayong said the university administration is doing its best to keep the campus peaceful. He said the skirmishes between the government forces and the terrorist group are confined in downtown Marawi. He said the summer classes have ended when the fighting erupted, thus allowing the students to go home for vacation before the unfortunate event happened.

President Macaayong said that with the start of Ramadhan, “We hope the fighting will subside in a few days.” He said, “Ramadhan is devoted to prayers and performances of undertakings aimed at enhancing spiritual concerns.” He said, “We hope the ‘other side’, referring to the Maute group, will eventually decide to desist from fighting as they are also followers of Islam.” He said, “We gain nothing from the fighting, but loss of human lives, destruction of properties, and sufferings of the people.” He urged the people to pray saying, “Let us pray to Almighty Allah to help us find solution to end the current problem.”

The month of Ramadhan, which is one of the five pillars of Islam, is a time-honored tradition of Muslims. Fasting tends to cleanse the body and purify the soul as well as develops physical, mental and spiritual prowess among followers of Islam. The other pillars of Islam include: Belief in the Oneness of Allah, Pilgrimage to Mecca, Giving Alms to the poor, and Praying five (5) times a day. (
TNRS)
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