Filipino 'Aquaman' Swims 23 Kilometers for Peace in Mindanao
Environmental lawyer and triathlete Ingemar Macarine, dubbed as the “Pinoy [Filipino] Aquaman”, has responded to the siege in Marawi City in Mindanao in the way he knows best – swimming for peace.
Macarine, 41, has been swimming to create awareฌness of the need to keep the seas and all of the natural environment clean. But last Sunday’s swim was focused on peace and hope in Mindanao.
“I am saddened by the ongoing war in Marawi city. It is sad to think that fellow Filipinos are killing each other in Marawi.
“This swim is my humble contribution to promote peace between our brother Muslims and Christians in Mindanao,” he told the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
The armed conflict in Marawi started on May 23 when a combined team of military and police operatives raided a suspected hideout of Abu Sayyaf leader Isnilion Hapilon and Maute leaders. The death toll in the Marawi City siege has reached 175.
Macarine started his swim at 6am.
Macarine started his swim at 6 a.m. on Sunday from the town of Guinsiliban, Camiguin Island to Balingoan town in Misamis Oriental. Macarine battled strong current and waves and a few jellyfish.
“It was a difficult swim because of the unexpected strong current,” he said. “My target was three to four hours. But it reached seven hours and 47 minutes for 23 kilometres instead of the 12km distance.”
Macarine is a native of Placer, Surigao del Norte, and currently the Commission on Elections officer of Tubigon town, Bohol province.
He recently crossed a distance of 8.4km in the icy cold water of Hudson River in New York.
The crossing of Camiguin Island to mainland Mindanao is part of his preparation for his second attempt to cross the English Channel in August. His attempt to swim the channel last year was preฌvented by bad weather.
“This swim is very memorable for me because I am from Mindanao. I was born and raised in Surigao del Norte,” he said.