ARMM’s Darul Iftah up soon; to cover all of region’s 5 provinces PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 05 September 2013 13:28

Clerics started organizing in Cotabato City Tuesday a Darul Iftah for the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao based on a provision of the ARMM’s charter entitling the regional government to have a “Juris Consul” to help in governance and in overseeing its religious activities.

There are separate Darul Iftah entities, also known as “Islamic House of Opinions,” that have long been existing in the Administrative Regions 9 and 12 that help oversee and guide Muslim communities in their religious activities and in propagating the faith.

The activation of an ARMM Regional Darul Iftah (RDI) was started Tuesday at the conference hall of the Office of the Regional Governor of the ARMM.

The former Speaker of the ARMM’s 7th Regional Assembly, Rasol Mitmug Jr., who is now the region’s deputy executive secretary, said the creation of the Darul Iftah for the autonomous region is premised on a provision of R.A. 9050 that effectively provides for the creation of a “Juris Consul,” to help in governance.

The 7th RLA, according to Mitmug, approved a budget scheme for a regional Darul Iftah, whose full activation will need the approval of the region’s lawmaking body.

Rasol said he is certain members of the now 8th Regional Assembly will support the creation of the Darul Iftah.

ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman, who attended the launching of the regional Darul Iftah’s creation at the conference hall of the Office of the Regional Governor in Cotabato City, said it is important to have such entity in the autonomous region to help monitor the activities of the regional government, particularly those that have religious and political implications.

“We intend to invite representatives from the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos to provide us inputs and suggestions towards this goal,” Hataman said.

Hataman said a technical working group, comprised of Islamic theologians from the ARMM’s five provinces, will initially draft the parameters for the RDI.

He said a good concept of an RDI should be patterned from a triangle, with its wider, lowest ebb encompassing the ARMM’s territory, which covers Maguindanao and Lanao del Sur, which are both in Central Mindanao, the island provinces of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi, and the cities of Lamitan and Marawi.

The Darul Iftah in Regions 9 and 12, as part of its many functions, decides on the dates of religious holidays and events, including the start and culmination of the Ramadhan fasting season, the commemoration of the Eid’l Adha, or feast of Sacrifice, and the Izra Wal Miraj, or what is for Muslims nocturnal journey of Mohammad to paradise.

“A fully, legally activated RDI can also provide big help in managing the ARMM’s Madaris education bureau which teaches Islamic values, Arabic language and Islamic peace-building doctrines among the region’s Muslim youth sectors,” Hataman said.

Hataman said he had allotted P5 million for the organization of the RDI and also earmarked  additional P5 million for the setting up of RDI offices in the five ARMM provinces.

The ARMM’s executive secretary, Laisa Alamia, said the creation of an RDI is a big boost to regional governance.

The affairs of government and religion are one in Islam, which espouses a doctrine of equality of all men, regardless of faith, cultural or religious identities and nationalities.