For the first time since the establishment of the Shari’ah court system in the country, the Supreme Court of the Republic of the Philippines organized the 1st National Shari’ah Summit, held from March 5 to 6, 2023, at the Limketkai Luxe Hotel in Cagayan de Oro City.
The event, themed “Forging the Role of Shari’ah in the National Legal Framework,” offered valuable insight into the marginalization and access to justice faced by an underserved group. It emphasized the importance of exploring their legal history and social/institutional barriers.
More specifically, the summit served as a platform “to equip judges, professors, lawyers, and counselors-at-law with the basic principles of Shari’ah, facilitate the exchange of ideas and best practices on Shari’ah, and explore key challenges and opportunities on strengthening the support of Shari’ah justice in the Philippines legal and judicial framework” (Philippine Judicial Academy, Supreme Court of the Philippines, 2023).
As an academic institution offering Shari’ah courses and upholding its role as an integral part of the Philippine judicial system, the UP Institute of Islamic Studies (UP IIS) strongly supported this event by sending some of its faculty members, lecturers, students, and alumni to attend.
Associate Professor Macrina A. Morados, a UP IIS faculty member and practicing Shari’ah Counselor-at-Law, was one of the Resource Speakers who discussed “Women in Islam”. Also in attendance were UP IIS lecturer, Coun. Luqman Imam, former UP IIS lecturer Ms. Aisha Flores-Malayang, UP IIS students Judge Jamel Mamutuk, Atty. Nash Marohomsalic, Atty. Abdul Aziz Ishmael, Atty. Abdul Majid P. Marohombsar, Sheikh Mahid B. Mangondaya, Mr. Mohammad Rayyan Domado, Ms. Sittie Aifat Ali, and Mr. Nur-Jihad Abbas, as well as UP IIS alumni Atty. Norhassan Curo, Ms. Zeni-Linda Nandu, Ms. Sittie Sania Lomondot, Mr. Yassin Maute, and Ms. Johayra Datlan.
The summit enabled them to share valuable insights and input to address issues on the Philippine Shari’ah legal and judicial system and acquire vital knowledge to help strengthen support for Shari’ah in the Philippines. Moreover, their attendance significantly contributed to UP IIS’s mission of engaging in local and international discussions concerning Muslims in the Philippines for the benefit of the Ummah.
The 1st National Shari’ah Summit was spearheaded by Supreme Court Justice Alexander G. Gesmundo, Senior Associate Justice Marvic M.V.F. Leonen, and Justice Japar B. Dimaampao and supported by Suporta sa Bangsamoro Transition (SUBATRA) and Governance in Justice (GoJust).