Parang, Maguindanao (August 31)—Members of the Run for Peace and Solidarity for Mindanao took a day off from their 10-day epic run to join the community of Parang in celebrating the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadhan with the traditional “kanduli (thanksgiving feast)” last night.
Led by Municipal Administrator Atty. Suharto Ibay, local officials and residents welcomed the more than 45 runners and the run organizers at the Municipal Hall grounds with a boodle lunch.
The runners also spent part of the day inter-acting with the community by sharing stories, playing games and seeking answers to lingering and new, curious questions on the Mindanao situation in general and the Moro issue in particular. They also participated in the Alay Linis project of the municipality in the morning of August 30.
Joznathan Torre a runner from Bohol, said “From now on, I consider myself a peace runner”
Earlier, Municipal administrator Suharto Ibay in his welcome address to the runners declared that “This is the first time in history that Parang was graced by a noble activity such as the Peace Run”. Ibay said that his municipality is located in between the camps of the rebels and the regional seat of government in Cotabato and have always wanted Parang to be a place of “peace and dialogue”.
The Run for Peace will ended in Cotabato City yesterday, August 31. The runners passed through Simuay and paid a courtesy call on Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Vice-Chairman Ghadzali Jaafar, passed the peace torch they have been carrying before proceeding to the Notre Dame gym for the culmination activity. Government chief negotiator Marvic Leonen joined part of the culminating program and received the peace torch in behalf of the government. He then graced a forum organized by both the Notre Dame University (NDU) and the Mindanao Peaceweavers (MPW) in the afternoon.