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Muslims mark prophet’s 1,444th anniversary

Amid the debates whether a celebration is allowed or not, many Muslims, including Filipinos, are expected to mark today the 1,444th birth anniversary of Prophet Muhammad Sallallahu Allaihi Wassalam.

In fact, in honor of Islam’s “rasullullah” (messenger of Allah), the occasion is a non-working holiday in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and at the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF).

At least in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the Minister of Labor had declared January 12 as a non-working holiday to mark the prophet’s birthday called “Milad Al Nabi” – Maulidin Nabi among Filipino Muslims.

In Muslim Mindanao, ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman through his regional executive secretary issued a memorandum proclaiming Maulidin Nabi, based on Muslim Mindanao Act No. 17 and Presidential Decree 1083.

“For this purpose, all government officials and employees of the ARMM are hereby excused from reporting to office on Monday, January 13, 2014,” the memo said.

For his part, NCMF Secretary Mehol K. Sadain also issued a related memo disseminated to the commission’s regional offices and employees.

He informed NCMF officials and employees that the “1435 Hegirah Maulidin Nabi or Birthday of Prophet Muhammad (S.W.A) will fall on January 13, 2014, corresponding to 12th of Rabbi’ul Awwal 1435.”

Sadain said Mauldin Nabi is one of the recognized holidays through Presidential Decree 1083 – Code of Muslim Personal Laws of the Philippines.

He also noted that the Civil Service Commission (CSC) has likewise issued CSC Resolution No. 81-1277 on November 13, 1981, which recognizes the Maulidin Nabi as a Muslim holiday.

The prophet’s migration to Madinah, now a city in Saudi Arabia, started an Islamic empire that spread to far away parts of the world.