Lanao dancers to show Muslim-Christian unity
They may not be Christians.
But 15-year-old Mohammad Alaiya Bassir and nine other Muslims will help a contingent from Lanao del Norte during the Sinulog Grand Parade on Sunday.
“Para namo, dili mo-matter kon Muslim ba or Christian. Gusto lang mi mo-participate (For us, it does not matter whether one is a Muslim or a Christian. All we want is just to participate),” Bassir told CDN.
He said they want to help the Lanao del Norte group defend its title in the Sinulog Free Interpretation category.
The contingent won the top prize in the Free Interpretation category in 2016.
Minda Regis, provincial tourism officer of Lanao del Norte, said they want to portray the unity between Christians and Muslims during the ritual showdown at the Cebu City Sports Center today.
Seventy percent of the people in Lanao del Norte, she said, are Christians while the rest are Muslims.
But Regis said the two religions work hand in hand for the good of their province.
“We are united. And we want to show this unity during the Sinulog,” she said.
Choreographer Mark Debalucos will lead the group in an attempt to retain their title.
Regis said they spent about P6.8 million for the props, food and other expenses in joining this year’s Sinulog.
“If we win, we may only get P1 million. But we are not thinking about the prize. This is our way of promoting our province and our offering to the Sto. Niño,” she said.
The group is accompanied by Lanao del Norte Gov. Imelda Dimaporo and Rep. Abdullah Dimaporo.
Regis said their group has 96 dancers and about 200 propsmen, ten of which are Muslims.
The Lanao del Norte contingent has been joining the Sinulog for 10 years. They got the top place in last year’s Sinulog Free Interpretation category.
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