A Christian group has risked offering a pretext for Islamist radicalisation by handing out Bibles to Muslim evacuees from Marawi metropolis.
Similar considerations have been expressed over proposals for a Muslim-only ID scheme.
Islamic instructor Abdulharim Ambor, whose faculty is at present an evacuation centre, mentioned evangelists had distributed Bibles to about 300 households.
“Of course, the people want help and they need help, but what they don’t need today is an insult to their sensibilities,” he mentioned.
“The aim really is to convince Maranao Muslims to embrace the Christian faith.” He added that the Bibles, entitled ‘Su Sindaw’ or ‘The Light’, have been included in hygiene kits – consisting of cleaning soap, toothpaste and shampoos – and faculty provides.
Evacuee Hadji Amir Ali advised The Inquirer that members of the group urged the evacuees to learn the Bibles. “Others were told it was a history book,” he mentioned.
Mr Ali mentioned the group took turns talking about Christianity and launched a person who was purportedly a Maranao convert.
Mr Ali mentioned he was incensed however “I held my cool and let them do their thing. I know my faith will not change just because they gave us something we really need, such as hygiene kits.”
Fred Dimamay, a member of the group that distributed the Bibles, admitted they included Bibles within the kits they gave away however didn’t imply any hurt or offence.
“When we were distributing the kits and the Bible, no one spoke against us. We just asked them to read it if they want.”
Mr Ambor warned that whereas the evangelists might not suppose it offensive to distribute Bibles, it may very well be utilized by hardline Islamist teams to radicalise folks.
“We cannot tell what will happen. So I am appealing to our brothers in the Christian faith, please don’t mix evangelisation with your attempts to help the needy Maranao,” he added.
Meanwhile, the governor of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and different Muslim leaders have criticised a proposal to copy in Central Luzon the Muslim-only ID system of Paniqui city in Tarlac.
Governor Mujiv Hataman mentioned his area “expresses alarm over reports” that the Paniqui native authorities is implementing a Muslim-only ID system.
“We believe this policy clearly discriminates against the believers of Islam and could set a dangerous precedent. It could also ignite anger among young Muslims who are the primary target for recruitment of extremist groups,” he mentioned.
“If the requirement is security related, the ID system should be applied to every resident of the community, to every Filipino, not just Muslims.”
He warning got here as authorities in Central Luzon mulled replicating Paniqui’s controversial Muslim-only ID throughout the entire area.
Imam Council of the Philippines president Ebra Moxsir described the proposal as “saddening”.
“But if our brother Muslims will be singled out, the majority would be sad,” he mentioned.
“Why just the Muslims. Are only the Muslims the extremists?”
Shariah lawyer Harun Ali, secretary common of the Imam Council of the Philippines, mentioned the proposal was “actually a violation of human rights”.
In an interview with Rappler on Friday, lawyer mentioned: “If the federal government is just requiring Muslims to have an ID, that’s unfair, unequal, an oppression, and opposite to the precept of equality and equity.
“It should be imposed upon all Filipino people because we are one Filipino people and we should be united as one.”
Senator Paolo Benigno Aquino IV on Saturday additionally launched an announcement on the problem, pushing for a unified ID system by way of his proposed Filipino Identification System Act.
He mentioned an ID system ought to be used to advertise security and enhance authorities companies, not “to encourage discrimination”.
“Singling Muslims out, giving them an ID and branding them as a potential threat will not make our communities safer. It will only sow animosity.”