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PIA Press Release

Kalinga rekindles cultural identity

Tabuk City, Kalinga (7 November) -- Concluding this year's celebration of the Indigenous People's Month in the province is the manifestation of the unique and still living arts and traditions of the Kalinga people through the Diddiga Festival.

Highlighting the two-day activity is the celebration of the Salidummay Choral featuring the dances, songs and musical instruments of the Kalinga people, Batok (tattoo) festival that showcased the still living Kalinga mambabatok (tatoo artist) Whang-od and the conduct of the Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) Forum which served as a venue to clarify issues concerning the rights of the Indigenous People.

During the event, leaders have called on the Kalinga people especially the youth to reinforce their connection to their cultural history and learn more about their identity as a people with unique ethnicity.

In her speech Governor Floydelia R. Diasen underscored the significance of the cultural heritage in molding the province as it is today. "We must not shy away from the lessons we have learned in the old days and let us be proud of our ethnic roots for it is from looking back into who we once were that we become more enlightened with where and who we must be in the future," she said.

With this she posed a challenge for all Kalingas to preserve their cultural identity and heritage along with their determination to become competitive in the modern world.

"Culture and tradition should empower us to become more dynamic as we leap forward with a new chapter in the story of our people," she pointed out.

National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP)-CAR Regional Director Amador Batay-an likewise post a challenge for the people to learn from past, maintaining "whatever is good, conducive and desirable for these are the tools that we need for development,". Anything that becomes an obstacle to development from our past are better forgotten, he stressed.

Spearheaded by the Provincial Government and the National Commission on Culture and Arts (NCCA) and NCIP, the Didiga Festival also marks a historical event in Kalinga since it started the documentation of the Kalinga Batok by the world know researchers and archeologist Lars Krutak who committed his latest book project for the Kalinga traditional tattoo. (ggd/PIA-Kalinga) [top]

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