• Ferrer: Govt panel joins Muslims in celebration of Eid’l Adha


    The government negotiating panel with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) extended their warmest greetings to millions of Muslim Filipinos in the celebration of Eid’l Adha on Friday.

    In a statement, Government panel chair Miriam Ferrer said that Eid’l Adha “reminds us of the proof of faith through sacrifice that is demanded of all the faithful.”

    “It recalls the story of Ibrahim [Abraham], whose complete trust in Allah led him to accept sacrificing his own son. Faithfully, the son

    likewise consented to be sacrificed,” Ferrer said

    The celebration, she noted, also marks the culmination of the Hajj to

    the Plain of Arafat.

    “As a feast among Muslims, it is a wondrous occasion for giving and

    sharing meat and food,” Ferrer added

    The government last year entered into a peace deal with the MILF that

    sets the stage for the creation of a Bangsamoro region in Mindanao.

    According to Ferrer, “it must be serendipity that we mark the first anniversary of the signing of the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB) last 15 October 2012 on this day of the Feast of the Sacrifice in the Islamic calendar.”

    The government, she said, expressed the hope that the celebration will inspire them as they pursue peace.

    “Perhaps we are being told that the delays and roadblocks are all part of the pilgrimage that we must endure in order to complete our tasks,” Ferrer said, citing that they “must therefore willingly offer more sacrifices as proof of our faith in the peace process and in each other.”

    “We need to share selflessly and wholeheartedly our strength and wisdom in order to reach common ground. Then shall we pass the test and together reach our destination,” she added

    Both panels of the government and MILF resumed talks Tuesday, extended it supposedly until Saturday but ended early Sunday morning with no deal struck on the Annex on Power-Sharing as the parties got stuck on a major issue on the ministerial form of government.

    Both parties acknowledged that the “remaining challenges and the time constraints demand that the panels remain focused on completing the annexes following a break for Eid’Ul’Adha.”

    “Both sides have a full understanding of their responsibility as they strive towards a sustainable and inclusive solution for the benefit of all people in the Bangsamoro,” they added.

    Malaysia is celebrating Eid’l Adha on Monday while the Philippines is celebrating it on Tuesday.

    Like last month’s Joint Statement, no date for the next talks was mentioned. CATHERINE VALENTE


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