Celso hosts 10th Pagbukah PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 05 August 2013 11:39

In keeping with tradition which he started 10 years ago, District I Representative Celso Lobregat on Friday joined the Muslims in the pagbukah or breaking of the fast in observance of the holy month of Ramadan.

Now on its 10th year, the pagbukah held at the Garden Orchid Convention Center was attended by almost 300 people —coming from all walks of life from Districts I and II.

Lobregat started the tradition when he was first elected mayor in 2004 and continued the same every year and continues the same even now as representative of the City’s first district in the House of Representatives.

“This is to show that we in Zamboanga, we live harmoniously and peacefully, the activities of our Muslim brothers are supported by the Christians,” the solon said.

Facilitated by Muslim leader Amilpasa Bandaying, the event was participated by close to 300 people from the city’s Muslim community that composed of Ulamas, barangay leaders, city officials, police and military officers and representatives from the academe and non-government organizations (NGOs).

Gracing the event were Vice Mayor Cesar Iturralde, Councilors Myra Paz Abubakar, Percival Ramos, Charlie Mariano and Gerky Valesco, Police Regional Director Juanito Vaño, City Schools Division OIC Superintendent Pete Natividad, Silsillah Dialogue Movement head Fr. Sebastiano D’ambra, Islamic Institute of Rio Hondo president Ustadz Abdulhamid Jamiri, National commission for Muslim Filipinos Director Denison Abidin, barangay chairman Nadz Sampang of Campo Islam and Rey Modillas of Cawit, Golden Crescent Consortium of Peace Builders and Affiliates president Prof. Ali Yacub and numerous others.

The Pagbukah (If’tar in Arabic) is also a demonstration of Lobregat’ sincere appreciation, as well as a show of solidarity and respect for the Muslim community in the city.

When he was mayor, Lobregat has always emphasized that in Zamboanga City people practice more than tolerance. “We not only tolerate but we understand each other’s culture and belief. That is why in Zamboanga we live in perfect peace and harmony with each other.”

Lobregat was the first chief executive to host the yearly pagbukah during the holy month of Ramadan. — Rey Carbonel