Cotabato City—The world’s Muslims on Friday ended their month-long daily fasting in Ramadan which started last May 17.
The Arab Union for Astronomy and Space Sciences earlier forecast a 29-day Ramadan in 2018 (1439 in the lunar-based Hijra Calendar) which means fasting days ended Thursday (June 14).
Khalid Saleh Al-Zaaq, a member of the AUASS, had issued the same forecast that June 15 would be the Eid’l Fitr (Feast of End of Ramadan), based on astronomical calculation.
“By the authority vested in me as the Mufti of the Bangsamoro, I do hereby declare tomorrow, Friday, June 15, 2018 as Eidl Fitr Day (of prayers and fete),” Sheikh Abdulrahman Abu Hraira Udasan said in a live radio broadcast at about 8:09 p.m. Thursday.
Malacañang has already declared June 15 a non-working holiday to mark Eid’l Fitr celebration, based on Proclamation 514 which the Palace issued on June 6, according to the National Commission on Muslim Affairs.
Dated today (Friday), the Palace also released Thursday the Eid’l Fitr Message of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte to the country’s more than five million Muslims.
“I join our Muslim brothers and sisters as they end Ramadan and reaffirm their commitment to self-purification and jubilation. We collectively observe this event to praise Allah in thanksgiving for providing our nation the strength to endure the challenges of misguided ideologies, terrorism, and violent extremism,” the Chief Executive said.
“This is an opportune time to reflect on the progress we have made to achieve long-lasting peace across the country, especially in Mindanao. May this revered festival inspire us all to foster greater unity amidst our differences in faith and culture. Together let us engage in acts of charity, as we steer our nation towards a more progressive and tolerant future,” he added.
While more Muslim countries have opted for modern scientific ways of determining lunar positions to days’ reckoning, other Muslims have stuck it out to the literal interpretation that the crescent moon should be sighted by the naked eye. According to this contention, counting would only be resorted to when efforts to seek lunar view failed.
Thus, local assemblies of Dharul Ifta were also expected to declare to Philippine Muslims that the daily 14- to 16-hour daily fasting formally ended Thursday evening. Ramadan fasting is total abstinence from food and drinks intake from dawn to nightfall, and from marital sex within the same period.
The same religious forums have deployed volunteers to specific areas of moon-sighting. Some formed communications group to monitor development worldwide to determine lunar precision into days’ reckoning toward the first day of succeeding month of Rajab.