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Philippines Honors Muslim Policewoman




 A Muslim policewoman was granted The Philippines\' highest police award in recognition of her role and unique style in solving many social problems in the predominantly Catholic country.

\"This award is good for my fellow policemen,\" policewoman Annie Marie A. Anuary told The Inquirer on Saturday, August 2.

\"We can prove that we have a lot to offer in terms of service to the public.\"

Anuary was one of 10 police officers to get the award of the Country\'s Outstanding Policemen in Service (COPS) for her efforts in solving conflicts in the southern city of Zamboanga.

The 36-year old, who chairs the Women and Children Concerns Desk of Zamboanga City Police Station 6, has helped fight women and children abuse and solve family disputes in the city.

Anuary, a biology graduate whose parents wanted her to be a doctor, sees his mission to fight abuses as her lifetime goal.

\"I felt I would be more effective as an investigator solving women\'s and children\'s cases,\" she said, adding that she now dreams of founding a crisis center for helping women and children in her city.


The Muslim policewoman said she relies on Shari`ah and the Noble Qur\'an in solving social disputes in the city.

\"…our orientation has been to blend Muslim culture in the enforcement of the law,\" Anuary, who studied in an Islamic school, said.

\"Being a Muslim is an advantage. We have been getting good results.\"

Anuary said that she benefitted from Islam\'s respect of women to fight abuses of women in the city.

\"In Qur\'an, it can be interpreted that men are superior than women and that wives should give way to their husbands,\" she said.

\"But it doesn\'t mean that all decisions are made by the husbands and it doesn\'t give them an excuse to beat their wives.\"

The Muslim policewoman also used the Islamic concept of \"shura,\" (mutual consultation) to prompt husbands and wives consult each others about major issues.

\"We cite the Qur\'an, so husbands and wives know their rights,\" she said.

Islamic teachings have also helped her fight the phenomenon of child abuse.

\"(Shari`ah stipulates that parents must) love and protect their children.

\"We stress this to our communities.\"

Muslims make up nearly 8 percent of the total populace in largely Catholic Philippines.

The mineral-rich southern region of Mindanao, Islam\'s birthplace in the Philippines, is home to 5 million Muslims.


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