Friday, September 20, 2013


Day 12.

May peace reign in our hearts, in our relationship with others and in the entire world.

Assalamualaikum, Zamboanga.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Crisis in my beloved home

I woke up early for Fajr prayer in the morning of September 9. After doing my wudhu, our telephone rang. My cousin asked if we heard gunshots. I said we didn't. She told us her entire family moved to my Aunt's house temporarily because the rebels attacked their barangay and the barangays nearby. She told us to prepare in case we need to evacuate our place since it's close to the affected areas. 

I told my grandmother about the call. She asked to switch on the television. 

And I went upstairs to pray. When I got down, the news started coming in.
The MNLF (Moro National Liberation Front) has entered the city and is heavily armed. Innocent civilians have evacuated their homes to look for safer grounds. The rebel group seized hostages and used them as human shield. 5 barangays are under attack by the rebel groups. Military troops prevents spillover to other areas, and counter attack. Classes and offices are suspended. Flights going in and out of the city are cancelled.
Afternoon came and President Aquino sends Interior Secretary Mar Roxas, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, and Armed Forces chief Gen. Emmanuel Bautista to Zamboanga City to help defuse the tension. 

My entire family and I stayed home and prayed for the safety of our friends and relatives. I underestimated the situation and thought that by late afternoon, the rebel group will surrender to the local government. But they didn't and the situation was out of control. Helicopter patrolled the skies, shots are still being fired, and innocent civilians continued to flee nearby barangays. By night time, my grandmother told us to pack our stuff and be ready. JUST IN CASE.

Security forces walk past debris scattered on a street after rebels from the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) clashed with government troops in Zamboanga City on Monday. MNLF forces tried to take over the city and raise their flag at the city hall but were prevented by government forces. Photo: Reuters
My friends working in Zamboaga City Medical Center, usually working on 8-hour shifting basis, had no choice but to stay. The hospital is situated in one of the crisis areas. By afternoon, patients were transferred to a gymnasium that was converted to a satellite hospital. And after more than 12 hours of work, my nurse friends got relieved from duty and were home safely. 

Patients that were transferred from Zamboanga City Medical Center to Western Mindanao State University Gymnasium converted to Satellite Emergency Hospital. Photo: GMA NEWS
I slept late and lightly. Woke up every once in a while because of roaring choppers overhead. My Inah and my Mmah, who are in Tawi-Tawi, kept calling and texting us. It was a terrifying night. 

Day 2 of the crisis left us feeling anxious and tired. There seemed to be no resolution, and terror is escalating. I feared for the lives of our relatives and friends who decided to stay and guard their homes. As advised by the local government, my family and I stayed home. My Aunt who is working in Virginia, USA and my Uncle in Saudi Arabia called and made sure of our safety. 

The rebels want 3 things: a place where they could stay, for them to be allowed entrance to the city hall and raise their flag, and a one-on-one talk with Mayor Beng Climaco. Three obviously impossible requests.

By midday, there were rumors of a possible attack in our barangay. Here's why were worried, we are surrounded by the 5 affected barangays from end to end. We wanted to leave but grandfather said we should stay. Rumors were indeed rumors. The number of evacuees are staggering. Reported 7000 individuals are in Joaquin Memorial Grandstand--children, women, senior citizens all moved safely but I can't seem to fathom their fear and their hunger. The good people of Zamboanga though has poured out help to the evacuees and made efforts to make sure they have food. Still, donations in cash or in kind will be greatly appreciated. 

Please send your donations to:

Banco de Oro: 3170069688

For those who have dry goods to donate, you may send them to:

Dian Hap Building (back of Waltac Vet. Clinic/Sky Cable) Nuñez St., Zone III, Zamboanga City

or directly to the Sangguniang Panglunsod (SP) through Councilor Myra Paz Valderrosa Abubakar 

(From: Marco Lobregat)

In Sta. Barbara, one of the barangays under "seige", houses are burned. Firetrucks unfortunately weren't given clearance to enter the premise.

It is Day 3. We are still hearing gunshots being fired. But today, we are trying to get things back to normal. Businesses started to reopen. Work in some offices have resumed. While I am completing this, the military troops are on the move and being aggressive.

Food distribution to the evacuees. Photo: GMA NEWS
We are praying this ends today. It caused the entire city too much stress. The city of Zamboanga doesn't deserve this. People are worried of their security. The people who left their homes are going hungry and getting scared.

Include us in your prayers, make duaa for the entire city. 
We all want the same thing: PEACE.

("May peace be upon you.")

P.S. Photos not mine. Credits to owners.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Selfie lovin'

In this era, who hasn't made a selfie? You may not be a fan of uploading your selfies online but I am pretty confident if I browse thru your fone, I'm gonna find a gorge selfie. I think I said selfie too much for this post. Sorry, I'm not sorry!

If you're having a difficulty taking that perfect selfie, the ultimate beauty vlogger, Michelle Phan has tips for you!


Monday, September 2, 2013

Ya Allah azza wa jal

The attack of innocent civilians in Syria woke me up. I'm still haunted by the images of children attacked in their home while asleep with their family with the use of chemical weapon. Whoever did such horrendous act have no space for love, light and Allah in their hearts. 

Wherever you are, take time to make duaa for Muslims all over the world.

Ya Rabb, may You grant the victims of terrorism, oppression, and torture, and all those who died for Your sake the highest level of Jannah. 
Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji'un.