Thursday, 22 September 2022, Sen. Francis Tolentino, during the public hearing of the Senate Committee on Cultural Communities and Muslim Affairs stated his strong support for the bills establishing a National Hijab Day in the Philippines.
Senate Bill No. 1272 and Senate Bill No. 805, presented before the Committee, both seek to declare the first day of February of every year as National Hijab Day.
A hijab is a veil worn by Muslim women that covers the head and chest. This is worn in the presence of adult males outside of the women’s immediate family. This piece of clothing is said to be an expression of the Islamic faith and had been a source of discrimination and prejudice against Muslim women.
In the international sphere, the World Hijab Day was launched in 2013 with the aim “to raise awareness and normalize the wearing of hijab.”
In Cotabato City, the Bangsamoro Women Commission led the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao’s celebration of the World Hijab Day themed “Hijab is our Crown, Not a Crime.”
Tolentino again lauded the initiative to recognize and celebrate with the Muslim community. The official dedication and united celebration of the Islamic faith is a symbol of the Philippine’s continued commitment towards a united nation.
“Patuloy po yung pag-suporta ko doon sa dalawang nakahaing panukalang batas dito po sa inyong komite, maging yung National Hijab Day. Alam ko po ang inyong saloobin at ako po ay kasama ninyo,” Tolentino said to the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos.