More than 100 Badjao families enjoy early Ramadhan treat from ARMM
Cotabato City – More than one hundred Badjao families temporarily living in the city were treated Wednesday to a meal and a night of fun and enjoyment by the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao in keeping with the spirit of Ramadhan and the approaching Eidl Fitr.
ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman said they want to highlight the support of the regional government to the plight of the Badjao or Sama Dilaut people.
“We want to give every Badjao man, woman and child the opportunity to live under acceptable and decent condition just like everybody else in the region,“ he said.
Years of discrimination, illiteracy and the incursion of commercial fishing boats into their traditional fishing grounds have forced some Badjao families to beg for food and money for sustenance.
“We are working to establish long-term solutions to the plight of most Badjao people,” Hataman said. The ARMM government also provided free medical service and medicines to the families in addition to the rations of goods and food items they received.
“We are really thankful for the assistance we received. They have not just given us rice and food to eat, they’ve given us hope,” Radja Tanggay, 26 and mother of two, said in vernacular.
Faima Diya, 8 and the third child in a brood of 9, hails from Basilan province. She said she had to stop schooling and join her family in begging for food and money on the streets of Cotabato City after migrating last year.
“I am happy my family have something to eat now,” she said. (Bureau of Public Information)