Mar 3, 2013

Robin Padilla visits Kiram gives P.5M for medical needs

MANILA, Philippines – For a brief moment Saturday, the wife of Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III thought security forces had been deployed to arrest her husband, a day after a shooting in Sabah left 12 of their followers dead in the hands of Malaysian police.

At a press conference at the sultan’s home near the Blue Mosque in Taguig City, the sultan’s daughter Princess Jacel and the sultanate’s spokesman Abraham Idjirani were telling journalists that the death of the “martyrs” in Sabah will not be in vain.

A phone rang, and just as Pangiyan Fatima Celia picked it up, a chopper was overheard circling the Astanah (house) of the Kirams. She told the party at the other end of the line, “baka huhulihin na kami [I think they’ve come to arrest us].”

Journalists ran outside to check what was happening, as a chopper was making a landing in an open lot beside the Blue Mosque.

The palpable chill among the crowd who feared the worst suddenly turned to exuberance, as a familiar figure emerged from the chopper---one of Islam’s most loved converts, the action star Robin Padilla.

Children and even security men mobbed Robin Padilla (Muslim name Abdulaziz) as he was being ushered by civilian security towards the great Blue Mosque. He went inside the mosque and said, at the entrance, “Magdadasal muna ako kahit na dalawang Raka.”

As he went towards the side of the mosque to pray, cameramen and photographers continued to click their cameras and get footage.

Then he removed his shoes, and went inside and prayed, bent his body and bowed to Allah.

Robin explained to journalists he had no specific mission and just wanted to meet and greet Sultan Jamamul Kiram III, the leader of Sulu who is at the center of a three-week old standoff in Sabah that has put Malaysia and the Philippine governments in one of the ASEAN’s most acid tests.

Inside the sultan’s house the prince of Philippine action movies shook hands with everyone, and exchanged pleasantries with Dayang Dayang and Princess Jacel and other members of the Kiram household.

Asked about his reaction to the Friday bloodbath in Sabah, he said: “Hindi po ako pinadala ng kung sino, ako po ay nagpunta dahil gusto kong makita ang Sultan, at suportahan ang kaisa isang Sultan ng Sultanante; alam naman natin sa kasaysayan na kinikilala ang Sultanate ng Tsina, India noong unang panahon pa [No one sent me here. I just want to meet the sultan and express my solidarity. We know from history that the Sultanate was recognized for centuries even by other countries like China and India].”

“Like you,” he told journalists, I’m also asking questions.” He added, "nalulungkot ako, kasi Muslim ang pumatay sa kapwa Muslim [I’m sad because Muslims killed fellow Muslims].”

He added, “Nasasaktan ako kasi kapwa Pilipino na ang pinapatay dun [It pains me because our fellow Filipinos were killed there].”

He explained that it was Sultan Kiram who persuaded him to convert to Islam when he was in jail for three years, on an illegal guns case.

He went inside the room, and some media reporters said the meeting was very cordial and Robin gave a check amounting to P500,000 for the Sultans’ medical needs.

They emerged after 20 minutes to give a photo opportunity to media.

But before agreeing to pose for photo ops, Robin gently prodded Sultan Kiram back to the room. “Let’s ask the sultan first to go back to his room. We might be quite unruly here.” And, immediately after the Sultan went back to his room, fans grabbed Abdulaziz and had their photo taken at every angle with the action star. - source


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