I relegate my column this week to Yessa Mae D. Tanguilan. She just graduated BS Biology – Cum Laude from the University of the Philippines – Baguio City as a scholar of the Beta Gamma Phi Fraternity and Sorority. I share her gratitude with my fellow Betan sponsors who I mention at the end of Yessa’s letter.
“I have sinned against the Lord” — II Samuel 12:13
For more than 30 years, the Center for Development Programs of the Cordillera strived and proved that an active and organized people’s participation is the key to achieving holistic development of communities. Importantly, the institution took this endeavor upholding the preferential service to the poor and disadvantaged, the respect of people’s rights and protection of the environment.
We were politicized the moment we acquired this “Igorot consciousness,” our collective social knowledge which drives us to take pride in being an Igorot, to defend our ancestral domain, and struggle for our right to self-determination. As early as the Spanish colonial era, Igorot consciousness took shape in our forefathers’ armed resistance against the Spanish military and missionaries. In the early post-colonial years, Igorot students studying in Baguio City and Metro Manila formed organizations such as the BIBAK (Benguet-Ifugao-Bontok-Apayao- Kalinga) Association as an expression of indigenous pride. Under Martial Law, the Cordillera region became a battleground for indigenous people’s rights during the anti-Cellophil and anti-Chico Dam struggles.
Thirty-two Lumad, including a couple with two kids, belonging to the Manobo-Pulangihon tribe of Quezon, Bukidnon escaped from their abusive employer in Sual, Pangasinan on June 30 according to a factsheet sent by the Unyon ng mga Manggawa sa Agrikultura (Agriculture Workers Union or UMA).
he National Irrigation Administration Cordillera Administrative Region (NIA-CAR) will minimize its construction work in the Alfonso Lista Pump Irrigation Project in response to the request of the regional National Commission on Indigenous Peoples to suspend its activities pending the issuance of the Certification Precondition for the project.
The Solidarity of Peasants Against Exploitation (STOP Exploitation) urged local government officials in the Ilocos region to utilize their share from the tobacco excise tax to alleviate the economic standing of their poor constituents.
“When the Holy Spirit comes upon you, you will be filled with power and you will be witnesses for me in Jerusalem, in all of Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth” – Acts 1:8
By now, I am guessing, that, as to how the New People’s Army started with only 60 weak guns and rose from a ragtag group now dotting the islands in battalion formation, a zygote of a New People’s Navy must be in the offing. I am guessing that this is plausible as the miracle of Jesus walking on water.
Gabriela Women’s Partylist Representative Arlene Brosas took her Oath of Office at the ancestral house of women revolutionary Doña Maria Josefa Gabriela Cariño Silang, better known as Gabriela Silang. The local government of Candon City restored the place and converted it to a museum. This is where Gabriela and husband Diego planned their revolt against the Spanish colonizers with the aid of the British forces.
Baguio City Mayor Mauricio Domogan, who chairs the Cordillera Regional Development Council (RDC) reminded the military during the 2nd Quarter joint meeting of the Regional Development Council-Regional Peace and Order Council (RDC-RPOC) to be careful in branding organizations and advocates of peoples’ rights as communist fronts.
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources Cordillera (DENR) appealed to anti-illegal drug operatives of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), Philippine National Police (PNP) and Philippine Arm to ensure the safety of trees before setting fire to marijuana plantations.