Muslim mothers can steer kids away from extremism, says Lorenzana

Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana. (File photo by LYN RILLON/Philippine Daily Inquirer)
DAVAO CITY —Muslim mothers have vital roles to play in the government’s campaign against extremism and other crimes, according to Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana.
Speaking at the end of the three-day 1st Mindanao Sultanate Summit here on Saturday, Lorenzana said mothers, who usually spend more time with their children, could guide them away from wrongdoings, including adopting the extreme views of those who were twisting the Islamic laws.
“Don’t let our country plunge into the situation that Syria is in now because of extremists,” he said. “Muslims are killing each other there.”
In a manifesto signed by representatives of Moro royal houses from various areas of Mindanao, traditional Muslim leaders said they were ready “to support, assist and cooperate in all levels of initiatives to deny entry to and prevent the growth” of terrorism and extremism.
Sultan Abdulaziz Salem Mastura Kudarat V, the 25th sultan of Maguindanao, said traditional Moro leaders such as datus and the princesses still wield influence over their communities.
He said they believed they could help push the government’s campaign against terrorism and extremism as “the royalties and noble houses of the Sultanate of Maguindanao… are found and have descendants everywhere in Mindanao.”
(They) retain their influence among the Moros and indigenous peoples through their role as the bearers and keepers of tradition, culture and religion,” he said.
During its heyday, the sultanate of Maguindanao ruled Mindanao Island, earning the respect of other royal houses such as the sultanate of Sulu and even the sultanate of Banjarmasin on Borneo.
Its territory included among others the undivided Cotabato province, parts of the Lanao provinces, the Zamboanga Peninsula, and parts of the Davao provinces. /atm
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