International Muslim NGO to conduct Forum on Jury System in Butuan City
by Ben Serrano
May 12, 2011
BUTUAN CITY (PNA) -A pro peace and development international Muslim non-government organization (NGO) will sponsor a “Public Forum on the Introduction of Jury System and Empowerment” tentatively set whole day on June 12, in time of Independence Day celebration.
The forum theme “Matuwid Na Hustisya laban Sa Katiwalian at Kahirapan: Daan Tungo sa Kapayapaan at Kaunlaran”.
Established in 2009, Southern Philippines Muslim Unity and Development Association (SPMUDA)was created by group of Muslim and non-Muslim professionals whose membership now rose to phenomenal 375,000 members from countries in Europe, Middle East, Africa, America, Asia where Muslim-Filipinos are working and living apart from local members based here in the Philippines.
SPMUDA main goals and objectives was to help improve living conditions of Muslim minorities, the Indigenous people and even non-Muslims living in dire poverty situation and give voice to the voiceless, marginalized sectors of the society most often victimized by unabated injustice practices.
According to SPMUDA’s core value statement posted in their government issued permits and licenses as NGO they inculcate values of hard work, dignity, promotion of human rights to its members and elicit potentials of every Muslims as well as non-Muslims for productive, peaceful and progressive society.
SPMUDA National Development Office Director Aliasgar Solaiman who is also Chief of Staff to the SPMUDA President toldPNAin an interview they are planning to invite Atty. Bertini " Toto" Causing, Founding President of the Hukumang Bayan and Movement of the Jury System in the Philippines as Keynote Speaker.
Causing and his group had been advocating introduction of JURY SYSTEM in the Philippines similar to that of American jury were ordinary citizens carefully selected to litigate criminal and civil cases.
Causing said the Jury System is fast, better and effective thus it is pro-poor because poor litigants who can't afford long litigation process lasted for years or even decades now had alternative in seeking justice that is trial by Jury.
SPMUDA Founding and Executive President Datu Camad M. Ali will give Welcome Address to the Forum Participants.
SPMUDA Caraga Regional Director Aleem Ismael Balindong who is also Executive Director of the People’s Ulama Council of the Philippines ( SPUCP) will give the rationale’ why such public forum was called at the opening program.
Solaiman said their target participants were other NGOs, POs especially human rights groups in Butuan City and Caraga region as well members and officials of the Judiciary, Academe, National Prosecution Service, members and officials of the local chapters of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP).
Local barangay officials especially members of the Barangay Lupon Tagapamayapa were invited.
Solaiman said they are expecting Butuan City Mayor Dr. Ferdinand Amante, Jr. to deliver the keynote address while Butuan City Vice Mayor Atty. Lawrence Fortun was invited to serve as head of the panel of lawyers' discussant during the forum.
Fortun will deliver the closing remarks.
Indigenous People's group, Bayanihan Council of Datus National President Supreme Datu Bagtikan toldPNAin a separate interview yesterday afternoon his group assured 100% attendance of the forum saying most victims of injustices are marginalized. poor lumads and the forum will enlighten and provide lumads certain knowledge about country's justice system and how Jury System fits in. (PNA/Ben Serrano)
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