The Philippines: Saving forbidden lovers
from Certain Death!
Manila Mayor Alfredo S. Lim averted what could have been a bloody ending for a lovestruck couple who went against Muslim traditions to fight for their forbidden love.
The couple, identified only as ‘Ferds’ and ‘Ces,’ aged 26 and 22, fell in love with each other. Everything would have been fine except that Ferds happens to be a Christian while Ces is a Muslim, whose customs and traditions bar women from marrying non-Muslims.
Since the girl’s parents opposed the relationship, the two eloped. After living together for two years, they produced a baby girl who is now nine months old.
Apparently upset by what was perceived to be a betrayal of the customs and traditions her daughter was born into, the girl’s mother had the baby taken by a relative who managed to live with the couple, prompting them to first seek help from Julius Babao of television show XXX.
Babao, in turn, sought the help of Mayor Lim who wasted no time and directed his consultant on Muslim affairs Bae Bayolan Tamano Marohombsar, to coordinate the matter with the authorities of the Muslim community, led by Barangay Chairman Faiz Macabato, Barangay Kagawad Saanoden ‘Acosta’ Punut and Shiek Haron Banto, chair of the Salam Progressive Party.
Punut, the barangay’s chairman of the committee on peace and order and appropriations, said a meeting was arranged by their group among the parties involved, along with Lim who said he was shocked upon learning that the couple concerned stood to lose not only their daughter but even their very own lives for disobeying the time-honored Muslim traditions and even if ‘Ferds’ has already converted to Muslim while they lived together.
Lim said Ferds has particularly asked help to get their baby back, offering to face the danger all by himself, the very thing that made the mayor all the more determined to help.
Accompanied by Babao, Macabato, Punut and Marohombsar, Lim personally appeared at the Islamic Center in Quiapo and brought the couple who were made to face their mother for the first time since they ran away.
Lim made all the necessary representations, including asking for forgiveness in behalf of the couple and requesting for the return of the baby and even volunteered to give the dowry of P200,000 in behalf of Ferds who, it was learned, was laid off from work recently and had already spent all his savings for the baby.
Right there and then, Ferds and Ces were married in Muslim rites and the mother agreed to bring the baby to Lim’s office yesterday, where the mayor also handed over the dowry as he promised.
The couple profusely thanked Lim for going out of his way to offer a solution to their problem, bringing their baby back to them and even providing the needed dowry.
It was learned that under Muslim traditions, a male may marry a Christian woman but a Muslim woman could not marry a male Christian. Doing so would warrant the girl’s parents to have her killed for disgracing the family and tradition.
In case the parents fail to do so, the relatives may carry out the death sentence not only against the woman but also against the man and even the parents who did not act in accordance with what should have been done.