Ben Contreras .
RALPH Vincent Abragan and Renato Gica Tibon commented on a special report on Marawi shared by Robert de la Serna.
Abragan said, “Marawi can become the Baguio City of Mindanao. The lake has a lot of potentials.”
Tibon put it this way: “For one, exert effort to wane people’s mind from belief that the lake is the biggest toilet bowl in the world.”
The topic reminded me of my recent trip to Manila. While waiting for our flight, the ennui made me to strike a conversation with the two ladies seated beside me at the departure area. They were from Malaybalay, Bukidnon, and members of a tribe there.
They talked about attending a workshop in Manila to enhance their knowledge on how to improve their products, what they can produce and how they could sell these. They didn’t look like elite entrepreneurs. They were simple people with a vision and who understand the need to be industrious and be creative.
At the back next to us was a family of Muslim Filipinos, a mother and her two children (girl and boy).
I smiled at them and asked, “Are you from Jolo, Sulu?”
“No, we are from Marawi,” she answered. Their place was bombed, their house lost, and I sensed the sadness in her face.
Her daughter was dressed up differently from ordinary girls from Lanao. I asked if she was a princess, and the mother nodded.
I told her that her city and Jolo, Sulu have so many beautiful places, and that some are just waiting to be discovered and developed. These places are potential tourist destinations. There’s a huge tourism potential there that could be turned into good sources of income. Their tradition is rich and their products are world-renowned especially the brass products. I told her I hope all the trouble would end, and peace will reign in her city again.
In order for Marawi City to be like Baguio City, there has to be peace and respect for each other’s culture and beliefs. I wish I was able to deliver the message.
The lake has great potentials, and citizens in Lanao are asserting their right over it. And yes, we need to stop negative insinuations about the lake. Let us help build good relationships with our brothers there. That’s not too much to ask for, right?
It’s been more than a week since I shared “The Coming War on China #6” by John Pilger. I still have to see one comment about it. It seems like nobody wants to. It seems like many are so fascinated with the great America that they refuse to read it, a few minutes short of a two-hour film by Pilger.
“China is building a strip in the South China Sea on disputed island condemned by international tribunals.” It is clear that local and international media are beating the drums, saying China is the new enemy.
“What is not news is that China itself is under threat.” The US has surrounded China with 400 military bases, warships, bombers and missiles.
Please take time to watch this film. This is not necessarily anti-Americans. It is not against the American people but against the US government and whoever controls the government and her covert agencies that make their president dispensable.
I will reserve my comments until I see others present theirs.