This is the letter of a Tausug Nursing student expressing her sentiment to the president of the Republic of the Philippines, P-Noy. She has a good write. She is a young talented girl that understands and experience the chaotic condition of the people around her, whom she belong – the Tausug. This Tausug young generation is aware of what is happening – the history, culture and the real identity that she is part. This was sent to the President this month.
This letter writing was their requirement. The instructor required his student to write a letter to the president according to the issues they wanted to bring. He started requiring student since the time of Marcos.
Her instructor commented:
“…The entire content deserves to be fully respected. And I think I am not in a position to edit your ideas as presented…What is most important is the substance which I think should be answered by the Office. Hope the President will really consider those points in your letter. Anyway, let me know whatever would be the response.”
The letter runs this way:
August 23, 2011
Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino III
President Republic of the Philippines
Compound J. P. Laurel St., San Miguel
Dear Mr. President:
Good morning your Excellency. My name is CUJ, 18 years of age, an ordinary student of Western Mindanao State University-Zamboanga City. I am writing to ask for your support and help for the TAUSUG people living in Sulu. I am a Tausug. And I cannot afford to see the situation of my land like this.
Let us be frank and practical to solve our respective problems. Filipino is for Filipino, Tausug is for Tausug.
Sulu people or Tausug have been put as one of the tribes of the Philippines, hence they are now called Filipino per legal document of the Republic of the Philippines. The word Filipino was coined during the invasion of the Spanish to group of Islands that were known as Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao and Sulu Archipelago.
The known “FILIPINO” was address to the Christianized people of Luzon and Visayas which were known as INDIOS – natives of the islands. Mindanao and Sulu Archipelago people were called MORO by Spanish before their religion – ISLAM. The real identity of the Sulu People is called Tausug, thus made them distinguished from FILIPINO and Tausug were never Christianized as Indios do. Tausug already exists before Spanish set foot to the Sulu Archipelago in 1578. They have their own government and system, the Sultanate of Sulu that was established in 1405 led by Ahlul Bait, Sultan Syariful Hashim Sayyid Abubakar.
The inclusion was started after the “mock battle” between America and Spain then signed the Treaty of Peace in Paris, France in 20 December 1898, known today as Treaty Paris. Through this treaty that Sultanate of Sulu was included as part of the Philippine Islands. After around nine months, America and Sulu signed treaty called Bates Treaty in 20 August 1899.
Sultanate of Sulu started forcibly became part of the Republic of the Philippines when the United States of America gave independence to the Philippine Islands (that is Luzon and Visayas only) in 1946, without the consent of the citizens or people of Sulu, the TAUSUG.
After four decades of movement for independence in Mindanao and Sulu brought about by MNLF for Bangsamoro Republik of which ended to “autonomy” and now MILF is on the table bargaining the “sub-state” for Bangsamoro Homeland that is previously also wanting independence.
Every human heart in Mindanao and Sulu is now put in vain and frustrations with the directional changed of these two big fronts from independence to something else – autonomy and sub-state. Since Tausug has separate history and government from Mindanao, they moved to reassert their independence last 17 November 2010 by bringing the issue of citizenship and sovereignty rights aside from religious right as Muslim.
That is because sovereignty is permanent and perpetual and citizenship or nationality movement is one of the peaceful or the alternative movement other that armed movement. It is according to the legal rights and basic human rights – as mention in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – The Rights to Nationality.
Tausug still owns the de jure government (sovereign government) and right now running their de facto government (government of the fact) even though Philippine de facto government is still in the playing in the Sulu Archipelago.
Tausug, the citizens of the Sultanate of Sulu have been struggling for years of their right of self-determination. They have then defended their island country of Southeast Asia from the Spaniards, Americans, Japanese and right now the Filipinos who have tried to colonize and subdue the Sultanate of Sulu – UNCONQUERED!
In this, I am asking the Philippine de facto government to withdraw from the territory of the de jure Sultanate of Sulu government thus FILIPINO IS NOT TAUSUG!
With this I am glad to hear a positive response from you Mr. President.
~LET SULU GOVERN HER OWN~
p.s: pls pull AFP out from Sulu. Plentiful of PNP-SAF were already visible in our place.
CUJ – Student Nurse.