Zambo greets ‘K-peace’ celebrity Lee Man Hee PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 14 August 2014 11:44

By DOMINIC I. SANCHEZ

 

While the K-pop (Korean pop) phenomenon has been sweeping the country in music and popular culture, a “K-peace” movement is now emerging among the youth of Zamboanga.

Last Monday, Aug. 11, hundreds of students carrying handwritten signs bearing peace messages together with other groups joined South Korean peace advocates Lee Man Hee and Kim Nam Hee in the International Peace Walk here.

Lee, chairman of the Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL), an international group aimed at pursuing treaties in promoting world peace and Kim, chairwoman of the International Women’s Peace Group (IWPG) were cheered by the youth as they walked together from City Hall towards the Paseo del Mar.

Lee claims that he is a descendant of Korea’s royal Joseon dynasty.

“Chairman Lee! We want peace!” cried numerous youth peace supporters as the 82-year-old Lee and his companions giddily danced during the walk.

In a press conference held at the City Hall in the morning, Lee emphasized the importance of involving everyone in the quest for lasting world peace, especially the youth.

“In order to attain peace, everyone’s duty is important,” said Lee in Korean. “Every one of us should be a peace advocate.”

“We only have today for this, there is no tomorrow,” he added, implying that there is no time for passivity and procrastination if the world is soon to achieve peace.

Lee, who has been traveling the world and meeting with politicians and leaders, pointed out that “peace is a responsibility.” He has been appealing to government leaders to put premium on peace since future generations will reap the results of what they are doing now, whether it is peace or the opposite.

However, in spite of the wars that have been raging Lee is still positive on the attainment of peace be it in Mindanao or in other parts of the world. “I still believe that we can achieve lasting world peace if everyone desires it,” he exclaimed.

After the walk, local peace advocate Fr. Angel Calvo said that walking and working for peace is a “long and painful effort,” but through it “we exercise solidarity with all groups and those who are in need, displaced by violence and victimized by injustices.”

After the program, local government leaders like Tawi-Tawi Governor Nurbert Sahali, inter-faith leaders, and other sectoral representatives signed a peace covenant with Lee and Kim, signifying their all-out support to Lee’s call for peace.

The peace walk, according to Zamboanga City Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco-Salazar “aims to send a very strong message of the city’s desire to attain peace in Zamboanga and in other parts of the world.”

“Mr. Lee’s visit and the walk for peace is part of month-long activities leading up to the September 9 anniversary of the siege. We want to commemorate it through healing and confidence-building,” said Mayor Climaco-Salazar.