OROQUIETA CITY, Misamis Occidental, Oct.2 (PIA)–National Commission on Indigenous People (NCIP) Chairperson Allen Capuyan urged tribal leaders to put their acts together and move as one for the common cause of strengthening solidarity, which according to him can serve as the foundation against exploitation of interest groups.
Capuyan told the IPs and the whole Subanen tribe that the inter-agency visit to Indigenous Cultural Communities (ICCs) was held amid the COVID-19 pandemic to proactively address the issues of the IP communities pertaining to their ancestral domains and human rights, as well as to promote the campaign to end local communist armed conflict per Executive Order No. 70.
He also reiterated the four bundles of rights specifically for the IPs, namely, Rights to Ancestral Domain, Rights to Self-Governance and Empowerment, Rights to Social Justice and Human Rights, and Rights to Cultural Integrity.
“Naa sa Republic Act 8371 nga within these 4 bundles of rights, nakasulod diri ang 36 nga specific rights, 10 sa Rights to Ancestral Domains, 7 sa Social Justice, 7 sa Self-Governance ug 12 sa Cultural Integrity,” Capuyan said.
(It is stated in Republic Act 8371 that within these 4 bundles of rights, it encompasses 36 specific rights of which 10 Rights to Ancestral Domains, 7 on Social Justice, 7 on self-governance and 12 on Cultural Integrity”)
He emphasized adherence to customary laws in solving problems, resolving conflicts, and deciding on issues owing to the fact that customary laws are powerful and encompassing for the concerns of the tribal communities.
Customary laws are deeply rooted on culture and have been practiced and honored for generations, Capuyan explained.
During the visit, the NCIP chair brought representatives from other national line agencies to create a “learning experience” for tribal leaders as well as to obtain information and lessons beyond their communities on the right actions to take during this time of crisis.
Providing his initial assessment drawn from his sorties, Capuyan said the tribal communities need continued explanation of the current situations.
NCIP has pre-determined 120 tribal communities to visit to deepen discussion on IP rights as laid out in the Indigenous Peoples Rights Act (IPRA) of 1997 or Republic Act No. 8371 which aims to recognize, protect and promote the rights of ICCs/IPS and for other purposes. (SMRN/PIA Misamis Occidental)