T’Boli, South Cotabato (SC) – The Rotary Club Koronadal Central (RCKC) in partnership with the 11th Special Forces Company (11SFC), 5th Special Forces Battalion, the officials and Indigenous People (IP) leaders of barangay Talcon, T’Boli, South Cotabato, and the Mindanao IP Youth Organization (MIPYO) celebrated IP Day highlighting the barangay’s first-ever tribal games on September 22 at the said barangay as a testament of their commitment towards an empowered and conflict-resilient IP community.
RCKC’s theme in line with this year’s IP Day Celebration is “Peace and Conflict Resolution and Preservation of Tribal Culture and Tradition through Tribal Sports.”
RCKC, through its Peace and Conflict Resolution Committee, joins the tribal and inter-cultural municipality of T’Boli and the Philippine Army’s implementation of the National Task Force in Ending Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) Sectoral Unification Cluster which encourages all sectors of society, to include non-government organizations (NGOs), to unite in delivering basic and social services and in preservation of IP culture and tradition to prevent terrorist infiltration and doctrination in the conflict-affected IP communities.
About fifty (50) participants from the T’Boli and Blaan tribes participated in four traditional tribal games organized by the IP leaders of barangay Talcon. Prizes and giveaways were provided by the T’Boli LGU and the RCKC.
Representing the RCKC under the leadership of its current President, Benjie V. Hoksuan are RCKC Peace and Conflict Resolution Committee Chairman and 11SFC Commanding Officer, Captain Krisjuper Andreo J Punsalan, Past President Johnny Cueva and Spouse RotarianYollie Cueva, Rotarian and South Cotabato Board Member Miguel M. Matinong, Rotarian Maribel Sy Hollite and Rotarian Jibril N. Labiao.
The tribal games was facilitated by the Mindanao IP Youth Organization leader for South Cotabato, Marvin Salawa, SK Chairman Divina Oman and Barangay Talcon Chairman Atto Bansawan and fully supported by T’Boli Mayor Keo Dayle T Tuan.
The commemoration of the tribal games is a way to preserve the culture and tradition of the IPs. RCKC and the 11SFC,5SFBN believe that a united and an empowered IP community that is conflict resilient can contribute in the national process of peace and development.
Meanwhile, the T’boli Local Government Unit serves as one of the towns of South Cotabato that has best practices in the implementation of the Retooled Community Support Program (RCSP) and E-CLIP as mandated by the EO 70 through its flagship programs DST Kariton and the MKDTT Cares to promote tribal sitio empowerment.
To date, eight (8) Communist NPA Terrorists and five (5) Milisyang Bayan or NPA in the barrios surrendered and fourteen (14) high-powered firearms, seven (7) low-powered firearms three (3) IEDs, three (3) hand grenades and other war materiel were captured within 11SFC area of operations since October 2021 with the help of the IP communities.