LOOK: Oblation run calls to end wars, not lives
MANILA, Philippines – In its annual Oblation Run, Alpha Phi Omega (APO) fraternity members of the University of the Philippines asked the government to fulfill its mandate of serving the people by protecting their welfare and interests first on Friday, December 1.
Known as the "Ritual Dance of the Brave", the traditional Oblation Run is a means for the fraternity to declare its stand on issues. This year, the fraternity's message was loud and clear: "End wars, not lives."
During the 40th anniversary of the Oblation Run held at Palma Hall in UP Diliman, the fraternity addressed concerns over the rapid increase in numbers in extrajudicial killings, the needed rehabilitation of Marawi, declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao, and the cancellation of peace talks between the government of the Philippines and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP).
The fraternity also appealed to the government to practice a brand of leadership that is open to dissent and criticism, one that recognizes debate and alternative views as necessary in a democracy. They said that there is no better approach than collaboration, consultation, and cooperation.
"It is through the collaborative efforts of organizations and institutions, consultation of constituents and communities, and cooperation despite differences that we can truly achieve peace and progress at the national level," APO said in a statement.
APO also asked everyone to work together in building a new tomorrow founded upon peace and justice.
"As men of Alpha Phi Omega, we are part of the generation that will inherit the consequences of the choices our leaders make today. We see that in order for us to secure our future, we all must commit ourselves to end wars, not lives," APO added.
The war on drugs has resulted in at least 7,000 deaths – both from legitimate police operations and vigilante-style or unexplained killings since April 2017. (READ: IN NUMBERS: The Philippines' 'war on drugs')
In the past, the Oblation Run was usually held on or before the date of the annual Lantern Parade, in UP. This often falls within the same week as the founding date of APO on December 16.
When the UP academic calendar changed in 2014, the date of the run drifted towards late November to early December. – Rappler.com