Chico River village holds mass wedding
by L. Lopez
Tabuk City, Kalinga (22 November) -- Barangay Dupag, a remote village of this city, which is accessible by crossing the Chico River celebrated mass weddings for 12 couples and civil registration of 60 persons.
City Mayor Camilo Lammawin officiated the marriage of the couples who have been staying together for sometime, while a mobile team from the Local Civil Registrar did the birth registration on children and adults.
The activity highlighted the Grand Pulong-pulong sa Barangay Program of the Philippine Army's 21st Infantry Battalion stationed in the area.
Barangay Dupag used to be among the barangays in the province influenced by insurgents, but was cleared by sustained military and civil operations of the army.
The Pulong-pulong is a community-based outreach project of the Army, where agencies of government participate with their respective programs. This is usually delivered to far-flung areas covered within the area of operation of the army.
Government has shifted the fight for peace with communist rebels using peace efforts, instead of pure military combat, which is gaining remarkable results from the mass base.
The balik-baril program under the National Reconciliation Program, is now expanded under the Office of Presidential Assistance on Peace Process (OPAPP), where surrendering rebels are provided higher cash incentive for their firearms, together with livelihood packages to start new life.
The program has caused a number of rebels to return to the fold of the law and has significantly reduced the insurgency situation in Kalinga, once a communist hot-spot in the Cordillera. (PIA Kalinga) [top]