Small, medium Muslim weavers boom during ARMM anniversary | Inquirer Business

Small, medium Muslim weavers boom during ARMM anniversary

Employees required to wear Muslim attire.

MANILA, Philippines—Unity and culture will take center stage in this year’s celebration of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao’s (ARMM) 24th founding anniversary.

ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman says various cultural shows and trade fairs will be conducted during the monthlong celebration of the ARMM’s 24th founding anniversary to depict the unique cultural identities of the region’s Moro and non-Muslim indigenous groups.


Hataman stresses the importance of these cultural shows during their festivities as they will highlight the peculiarities of the region’s local communities, which, despite having different traditions and cultures, are bound by Islam as a common religion.

ARMM Regional Governor Mujib Hataman in Yakan Fashion hand-woven attire

“The region’s non-Muslim indigenous groups are also related to us. There is no separation, except for religious identities. We are one because we only have one community before the dawn of Islam in this part of the country. One people, one voice, one direction—unity, peace and prosperity,” Hataman says.


The monthlong celebration has already kicked off last November 7 with a parade of traditional attires made from hand-woven fabrics.

Hand-woven producers are happy during this long-month celebration because the demands go high from the distributors. “Very salable sya during ARMM day. Manila and local tourists buy our stuff like Hijabs, Malongs and other consumer Muslim products,” says Hadja Maumina Tamana, a Maranao businesswoman.

“Hand-woven fabrics are essential in our culture to show the richness and diversity of our country and the artistry of the Moro weavers. Hand-woven fabrics are the products of Moro tradition and the inspiration sought from the cultural ethos by the weavers. Innovative weavers, with their skilful blending of myths, faiths, symbols and imagery, provide the fabric an appealing dynamism,” says Amihilda Sangcopan, Chief of Staff and organizer of the event.

Hataman appeals to use hand-woven cloths—a step was taken to help and preserve the Moro weavers.

“If we want to keep this heritage of our country alive, then it is important to improve the socio-economic status of weavers by updating their skills and providing them with essential inputs.

Various schemes and programs are launched by the government that cater to the needs of the handloom sector both at the micro and macro level,” Anak-Mindanao party-list Rep. Sitti Djalia T. Hataman adds.

Maranao float is one of the most highlighted. It showcases the Maranao tradition and culture.

As an example, no less than ARMM Regional Governor Hataman wore traditional ethnic Yakan fabric. He directed all the government employees to wear Moro attire.


The event served as an initial highlight of the celebration of the region’s 24th founding anniversary which will last until Dec. 19, when local residents commemorate the Shariff Kabunsuan Day.

The Kabunsuan Day is a non-working regional holiday observed yearly to honor Shariff Mohammad Kabunsuan, a Muslim missionary from Johore, now an island state in Malaysia, who arrived in the 14th century in what is now Cotabato City to preach Islam.

The start of the celebration of the ARMM’s 24th founding anniversary, meanwhile, coincided with Thursday’s Sheik Karimul Makdum Day.

The Makdum Day is also a yearly regional holiday being observed throughout the autonomous region in commemoration of the arrival 633 years ago in Simunul, now an island town in Tawi-Tawi, of Arab preacher Makdum from the Middle East.

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TAGS: Anniversaries, armm, autonomous region, Culture, Mujiv Hataman, Muslim Mindanao, Muslim weaves
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