Claim: Imam Ali Abdul Madid, the Grand Imam of the Philipines, officially endorsed Leni Robredo in United Muslim Alliance Philippines, guaranteeing 6 million votes for her
At a glance: This transpired during a special event organized by the United Muslim Alliance and the Muslim community in Quiapo, Manila.
The Facts: On April 22, 2022, after the endorsement of the priests and clergy of the Catholic Church, VP Leni and Kiko proceeded to the Golden Mosque in Quiapo, Manila as they joined them to an Iftar (the meal after sunset which Muslims partake during the holy month of Ramadan).
In attendance was the Grand Imam of the Philippines, Imam Ali Abdul Madid, being a member of United Muslim Alliance Philippines. But the UMAP has no bloc voting that could reach up to 6 million and Imam Ali has no wide political influence.
According to the 2015 Census of Population, Islam is the second most popular religion in Mindanao, with 5,646,010 population or 23.39 percent from the Mindanao’s population from Region 9 Zamboanga Penisula, Region 10 Northern Mindanao, region 11 Davao Region, Region 12 SOCCSKSARGEN, Region 13 Caraga and ARMM (2015 POPCEN).
Even with this number, it’s impossible for all the Muslims to vote for one president due to their demographic locations, personal views and political environment since Sara Duterte could also be a factor that could link to another presidential candidate, Bongbong Marcos.
Of Mindanao’s 24,135,775 population, Muslims make up about 23.39% of the island’s entire population with more than half of this percentage (14.30%) occupying the ARMM.
The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and its political party, the United Bangsamoro Justice Party (UBJP) announced on Saturday morning that they are endorsing Leni and Kiko. Officials from the MILF and UBJP, including those from the Bangsamoro Government, attended a press conference with Robredo inside Camp Darapanan in Maguindanao to confirm their support for her candidacy.
Robredo made the declaration about a month after visiting the Bangsamoro Government Center in Cotabato City, where Bangsamoro Minister of Education Mohagher Iqbal and Interior Minister Naguib Sinarimbo indicated that they are not yet ready to endorse a certain candidate.
They’re giving other candidates a chance to offer their own platforms, Iqbal remarked in an ambush interview shortly after Robredo’s visit. Only Robredo and Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso addressed speeches before the legislature at the time.
On the other hand, a network of powerful Muslim religious leaders in the Zamboanga Peninsula region including the provinces of Basilan, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi announced their decision to support Vice President Leni Robredo for President on April 18.
Sheikh Yahya Titong, head of the Muslim Leaders Assembly, stated the various groups in the network have members who were divided in their presidential choices until a decision was made.
The coalition’s imams and madaris wielded considerable power because they were followed by thousands of Muslims in the ZamBaSulTa area. The coalition also stated that its members believe Robredo is the greatest candidate for the Bangsamoro.