By Liezl Lacaste, ABS-CBN Zamboanga
ZAMBOANGA – Representatives of Ulama Council of Zamboanga Peninsula on Monday morning met with the officials of Zamboanga City Police Office and National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).
This comes after the police released the artist sketch of the suspect in the September 18 bus bombing in the city including a description of the suspect as “Muslim type.”
Ustadz Abdulwakil Kasim, the chairman of the Ulama Crisis Management Committee, said the label is an insensitive act on the part of the investigator.
“It is not only politically incorrect but generalization that all Muslims are possible suspects of the heinous crime. It is blatant disregard for respect for our Islamic Faith, a discrimination and a stereotype that will aggravate the very fragile Muslim-Christian relationship being syndicated and predicated with bloody wars in the past, ” Kasim said.
Police Senior Superintendent Angelito Casimiro explained that the ‘Muslim type’ referred to the dialect which the suspect used based on the testimony of the witnesses.
The sketch was produced by the NBI.
Casimiro and NBI Regional Director Atty. Ferdinand Lavin apologized and reiterated that the artist who came from Manila had no intention of creating conflict between Christians and Muslims.
The local government unit also appealed to both agencies to be sensitive while handling any information relating to culture and religion.