Muslim cemeteries in all ARMM towns proposed by lawmaker PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 09 December 2013 10:55

Assemblyman Khadafe Mangudadatu of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao has proposed a regional law establishing public cemeteries for Muslims in all of the ARMM’s more than 100 towns.

Mangudadatu, who is representing the second district of Maguindanao to the ARMM’s 24-seat Regional Legislative Assembly (RLA), said he had filed the proposal and is confident his colleagues in the region’s “Little Congress” will vote for its enactment.

Majority of the Moro communities in ARMM — covering Maguindanao and Lanao del Sur, which are both in Central Mindanao, and the island provinces of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi, and the cities of Lamitan and Marawi — do not have public cemeteries owing to their centuries-old tradition of burying the dead in private lots and farms.

Mangudadatu, who is a younger sibling of Maguindanao’s incumbent provincial governor, Esmael, said his objective is for each of the local government units in the autonomous region to provide at least three hectares of land for the communal Muslim graveyards.

“The proposed bill is aimed at providing decent hallowed resting places for indigent ARMM Muslim residents,” Mangudadatu said.

A commissioner in the National Commission for Muslim Filipinos, cleric Esmael Ebrahim, has endorsed Mangudadatu’s proposed law for regional application.

“This will be a big help to our impoverished Moro sectors in the autonomous Region,” Ebrahim said.

Mangudadatu said his family is ready to donate a piece of land in their hometown, Buluan, for conversion into a Muslim burial ground even before the RLA can pass his proposed bill into law.