by Claire R. Gigje
MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur (PIA)–Women, being an empowered sector of the community, have already been recognized for their roles and contributions in any field and aspect, including in matters related to peace and order.
The security sector, particularly here in the city, has conveyed that they see women in their workplaces and troops as vital in each of their operations as they display equal capabilities and strength with their male members.
As such, they heartily joined the celebration of Women’s Month kicked off by the city government this March.
City Police Station Chief PLtCol. Gieson Baniaga said that this annual event is a good way to remember how important it is to work toward gender equality and build a society where everyone has the same opportunities, no matter their gender, race, or social background.
He affirmed that a man could be successful through the help, support, and determination of a woman who may not necessarily be a wife, as she could be a mother or a sister.
“Kami ay nagpapasalamat sa mga kababaihan sa inyong mga tulong. Kami ay sumasaludo sa inyo (We are thankful to the women for their help. We salute you),” said Baniaga.
The chief of police also said that women have contributed much to the peace and order aspect.
He shared that the Philippine National Police (PNP) has hijab troopers who assist other men in uniform when big events take place.
Additionally, they also have a Women and Children Protection Desk (WCPD) that caters to complaints related to harassment and abuse.
With this, Baniaga urged victimized women to approach their protection desk to address their relevant issues and concerns.
500th Combat Engineer Battalion Battalion Executive Officer Capt. Dominador Addun Jr. further attested that women give strength to men.
He recalled that before, the notion was that men were stronger than women, but now, such a notion is already deemed invalid, saying that everyone is already equal as things men do can now be done by women as well.
Addun Jr. maintained that the role of women remains significant, especially in the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
He said in the army, almost all of their lady soldiers do what is assigned to their men in uniform.
“Mayroon kaming mga nagpapatrol na babae. Sila ay nakikipag-usap. Equal na talaga ang rights natin (We have patrolling women. They communicate. We really have equal rights),” said Addun.
Marawi City Fire Station Chief of Operations FO3 Japar Macalaba, on the other hand, conveyed that women are indeed selfless, and bear love, purity, grace, and integrity.
He underlined that women symbolize virtue, great strength, tremendous peace, and resilience, which men cannot manifest all the time.
Macalaba gave an example of how men can’t be stronger than women: when women give birth and raise children who all have the potential to be leaders of the country in the future.
“Sa mga babae, maraming maraming salamat sa inyong mga kontribusyon sa pagbuklod ng ating communities (To all women, thank you so much for your contributions to the development of our communities),” he said.
Members of the security sector here have expressed their openness to welcoming women in their offices. (CRG/PIA-10/Lanao del Sur)