A step closer to home

Months and months of idling in a place once raided by the authorities and the attempted arson of the compound, the displaced Lumads of Haran hoped to return to their communities.

During President Rodrigo Duterte’s first State of the Nation Address (Sona) last July 25, the remaining Lumads who didn’t join the Manilakbayan march also didn’t missed the opportunity to hear and watch the president’s first Sona from their little television inside the UCCP Haran compound.

Despite the inevitable rain bursts, men, women and even children were hooked as Duterte started his speech but it comes with a problem, majority of the evacuees can barely understand English language.

Regardless of having such difficulty, one thing that made Lumads cry with happiness was the declaration of the unilateral ceasefire with the communist rebels.

Jong Monzon, secretary-general of Pasaka-Southern Mindanao, said Duterte has gained the people’s heart following the declaration of the unilateral ceasefire.

Following the declaration means that military forces in lumad communities could be pulled out thus, making a difference in Davao Region.

“We hope to hear that Duterte will order the pull out of military from our communities, it would be a moral boost to the lumad evacuees here in Haran,” Monzon added.

It is evident that all evacuees wants to go home and live a normal life without the fear of bullets and deaths.

Thus, all evacuees are praying that there will come a time that war will no longer be an option. Lumads are the first ones to celebrate about it.
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