President Rodrigo Duterte has issued Proclamation No. 6 declaring July 6, Wednesday, a non-working holiday in observance of the end of Eid’l Fitr or “festival of breaking of the fast.”
Eid al-Fitr is an important religious holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide that marks the end of the month-long Ramadan. Eid is a day which Muslims are not allowed to fast. It is also the first day of the month of Shawwal.
The proclamation reads:
“The entire Filipino nation should have the full opportunity to join their Muslim brothers and sisters in peace and harmony in the observance and celebration of Eid’l Fitr. In order to bring the religious and cultural significance of the Eid’l Fitr to the fore of national consciousness, it is necessary to declare Wednesday, 6 July 2016, as a regular holiday throughout the country.”
Republic Act No. 9177, signed into law in November 2002 under President Gloria Arroyo, declares the first day of Shawwal, the 10th month of the Islamic calendar, a national holiday for the observance of Eidul Fitr.
However, this day is dependent on the Islamic calendar.
According to RA 9177, “the approximate date of these Islamic holidays may be determined in accordance with the Islamic calendar (Hijra) or the lunar calendar, or upon Islamic astronomical calculations, whichever is possible or convenient.”
In accordance to Republic Act 9177, only the Office of the President can announce the final date for this religious holiday, upon the recommendation of the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos.
Islam is the oldest recorded monotheistic religion in the Philippines. It is also the second most popular religion in the predominantly Catholic Philippines with 11% of the total population as of a census conducted in 2012 report by the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos.