The past week by some quirk of fate I was thrown into a series of events initiated by a talent agency called Olivar’s World of Events Production (OWOEP). It is run by a good friend of mine who offers a gamut of entertainment-related services from casting for films, TV and commercials to mounting big, medium, and small events on the frenetic side of Metro Manila.
This took me to the recent international peace event held at the Vivere Hotel & Resort, Muntinlupa City in partnership with Rotary International Rotary Club of Muntinlupa North, and Muntinlupa Office of Muslim Affairs. It was hosted by Trans Mundi Pax Humanitas and Southern Philippines Muslim and Non-Muslim Unity and Development Association International. (SPMUDA).
This is in response to the call for International Peace Day of the United Nations through its iconic founder/CEO and President HRH Tuanku Camad Ali, whose headquarters is based in the City of Gentle People Dumaguete City.
Himself a Dumagueteño, Camad founded the Royal Chivalric Order of Baloi, one of the 19 Royal Houses (Kingdoms) of Mindanao and one of the four major state principalities in the country. He is recognized by the International Association of Nobilis in Europe and other royal, charity, and humanitarian institutions worldwide.
He has been highly decorated with prestigious honors and awards for his humanitarian efforts in promoting inter-religious harmony and understanding and helping bridge the culture between Islam and Christians of the West and the Orient throughout the world.
In his capacity as Prime Minister of the Royal House of Baloi and as a relative of Rodrigo Duterte, Camad focused the theme of the peace conference around Spumada’s 7-point Peace and Unity Agenda.
Among other ennobling goals, it is dedicated to the support and enhancement of mutually growth- promoting socio-economic and cultural development programs globally.
To give some dramatic face to the cultural agenda, the organizer hand sought the participation of the controversial Benilde student Deniece Cornejo to act as one of Spumada’s Ambassadors of Peace for the Youth Sector. Deniece, who is yet out on bail, has established herself creditably as motivational speaker among the disenfranchised sectors of youth and women, a reputation of sort which catapulted her even amongst the podiums of top-level corporate niches wanting to hear a different voice of a young woman out to prove on her own as positively humane entrepreneur making good use of her God-given talent as painter, stylist and graphic artist.
Don’t look now but by the mere mention of Deniece’s name, the biased judgemental would have arched their eyebrow’s to no end, but she gamely prevailed upon them at the roundtable winning them over to her touted advocacy for the promotion of peace and tolerance as she talked them out straight from her heart and experience as a young woman on a journey toward self-redemption from her conflict with the law of the land.
Camad, in his speech for peace building, spoke on behalf of the Rotary Foundation announcing its Peace Fellowship Program annually to select up to 100 individuals from around the world to receive fully funded academic fellows from different universities adopted as Peace Centers.
Rotary Peace Centers have trained more than 900 fellows for careers in peace building. Many of them have gone on to serve as leaders in national government, NGOs, the military, law enforcement, and international organizations like the United Nations, and World Bank.
Anna Lou Olivar, who is behind OWOEP, said that Deniece Cornejo is short listed in the applicants for the aforesaid peace fellowship.
All I can say is why not when in fact the lady deserves the life-changing opportunity the most.