Gensan’s Maguindanaon royal houses confer Mayor Pacquiao with traditional honorary title

In a bid to strengthen unity between local officials and the Muslim constituents, the Maguindanaon royal houses of General Santos City conferred Mayor Lorelie Geronimo Pacquaio with the honorary traditional title "Bai a Waris na Gensan" on November 7, 2022, at Lagao Gymnasium, Lagao General Santos City.
Three Moro traditional leaders, namely Rajah Muda Atty. Abdurrahman Canacan, Rajah Muda Abdulhamid Ingkong and Rajah Muda Harid Palalisan conferred Mayor Paquiao the honorary title in recognition of her authority as the incumbent local chief executive of General Santos City.

The event was also witnessed by traditional leaders coming from the Sangir, Tausog, and Maranao tribes as well as different Moro sectoral and civic organizations.  

In their speeches, the three Rajah Mudas expressed their full support to the administration of Mayor Pacquiao. They also urged the Muslim constituents of the city to support the programs of the local government.

Almost four hundred attendees, comprised of the members of the cabinet of the Royal Houses of Sugoda Buayan and Royal House of Malok, Imams, and Madrasah teachers, pooled at the Lagao gymnasium to witness the conferment ceremony.

"This activity manifests recognition of our incumbent local officials and strengthens their relationship with the Muslim leaders of our city," said Jocelyn Lambac-Kanda, Division Chief of the City Mayor’s Office-Integrated Cultural Communities Affairs Division (CMO-ICCAD).
Lambac-Kanda related the programs of LGU Gensan for the Muslims, like the Madaris for Peace Project, Shari’a Atas Bitiara Project, PEACE Project, Halal Industry Development Project and Public Muslim Cemetery Project.

"We appeal that we sustain our unity and continue helping one another in implementing responsive programs for the Muslim Ummah of our city," she underscored.

In her acceptance message, Mayor Pacquiao said, "Sa akuang termino, seguraduhon nako na na mahimamat nako tanan sektor hilabi na ang inyong grupo para personal nako mabal an kung unsa ang mga problema na  kailangan  na mahatagan ug solusyon hantud sa makaya nato (In my term, I will make it sure to meet all sectors particularly your group so that I will personally know your concerns and address those in the best way that I can.)."

"Isa ka dakong dungog ang matagaan ug honorary traditional title gikan sa atoang Muslim kadatuan. Dako ang akong pagpasalamat sa inyuhang pagsalig nako isip usa ka honorary miyembro sa kadatuan. nakabalo ko nga kauban niini ang dakung responsibilidad. (It’s an honor to be bestowed with an honorary traditional title by our traditional leaders. I am thankful for your trust in me as an honorary member of the Kadatuan. I know that along with this is a huge responsibility.)," she added.

The lady mayor further urged the Muslim leaders to love one another and avoid disunity.  She acknowledged the role played by the Muslim leaders in the Muslim communities.

Mayor Pacquaio ended her speech with a commitment of her continuing support to the Muslim constituents of the city.
Moro tribal leaders present were Datu Hasbi Jamalol for the Tausog, Datu Danny Salisipan with Datu Teng Bantuan for the Sangir, and Datu Alex Lacoto for the Maranao.

Sheikh Ibrahim Andang, chairman of the the Muslim Religious Advisory Council, Ustadz Moctar Alangan, President of Gensan Madaris Asatidz Federation, Datu Esmael Andang, chairman of the GSC  Muslim Council of Elders were present to show their support.

The event culminated with the signing of covenant for unity. The Moro leaders committed to espouse cooperation and harmony among themselves and the Muslim constituents of the city and support the local and national governments’ programs and initiatives on peace and development.

They also vowed to embark in various undertakings beneficial to the marginalized members of the Muslim Ummah and heed the tenet of Islam on brotherhood and unity towards sustaining peace and progress in the city of General Santos.