DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/20 August) — The Department of Education has issued an advisory encouraging students of all public schools in Metro Manila to participate in the Eid’ Fitr Festival or Hariraya Puasa from Sept 2 to 4 at the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City “as a way of educating them that Muslim culture is a part of the Filipino cultural heritage,” DepEd Advisory No. 395 said.
Eid’l Fitr marks the end of the month-long Ramadan. A national holiday by virtue of Republic Act No. 9177, Eid’l Fitris an occasion of joy and thanksgiving among Muslims, shared with non-Muslims.
The DepEd Advisory, issued on August 12, said “pupils and students of all public schools in Metro Manila are encouraged to watch the cultural presentations as a way of educating them that Muslim culture is a part of the Filipino cultural heritage.”
The Eid’l Fitr Festival is initiated by the Magbassa Kita Foundation, Inc., with the support of the Philippine Center for Islam and Democracy, Department of Tourism, Metro Manila Development Authority and the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process.
The Festival includes art exhibit of works by Abdulmari Imao, the first and only Muslim National Artist for Visual Arts; country displays of the different Islamic embassies in the Philippines; Trade fair of Moro and Mindanao products;” and cultural presentations.
Proceeds will benefit MKFI’s literacy and scholarship programs in Mindanao to help improve economic and social integration of Muslims in the Philippines “into a modern democratic society,” the PCID said in a press statement.
Vice President Jejomar C. Binay will be the Keynote Speaker and Guest-of-Honor during the Opening Ceremonies on September 2, the PCID said.
Envisioned to become an annual activity, the PCID said the three-day Festival aims to create a better understanding and appreciation among Filipinos of ethnic, racial and religious diversity in the country; showcase the richness and diversity of the cultural heritage of Muslims in the Philippines; forge stronger social, cultural, as well as economic partnership between Muslims and non-Muslims; create a positive environment of mutual trust and confidence among Muslims and non- Muslims; and provide an attraction for tourist arrivals from the Islamic countries who go on vacation during the Eid’l Fitr.
The Young Moro Professionals Network will be presenting Moro dances, games, food, clothes, music during the cultural presentations each day at the Music Hall of the Mall of Asia. (MindaNews)