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PIA Press Release

T'bolis welcome NCIP delineation of ancestral domain

Davao City (11 February) -- (LRC-KsK/FoE Phil) T'bolis belonging to the Taboli Manobo S'daf Claimants Organization (TAMASCO) expressed relief when, after a long wait, the office of NCIP XII finally started the perimeter survey delineating their ancestral domain claim including portions of the coffee plantation of the Consunjis, in Barangay Ned, Lake Sebu, South Cotabato.

Victor Danyan, TAMASCO chairperson said, "Dugay na namon ginahulat nga umpisahan na ang survey para mapadali ang pag aprubar sang CADT" (We have waited so long for the survey to start in order to fast-track the approval of CADT or Certificate of Ancestral Domain Title). TAMASCO is claiming as their ancestral domain an estimated 6,000 hectares of land which includes a large portion of the coffee plantation in the hinterlands bordering Brgy Ned in Lake Sebu and Brgy. Sto Nino in Bagumbayan, Sultan Kudarat.

But TAMASCO members fear that security personnel of Silvicultural Industries Incorporated (SII) would sabotage the delineation after one of its members was harassed last January 31, 2009 while on his way home from an organizational meeting.

In a spot report prepared by the organization, Akilis Anaw, TAMASCO coordinator, was reportedly accosted by three armed men wearing camouflage uniform at around 5:00 pm along the boundary of Sitio Segowit and Sitio Tuburan, all of Brgy Ned. One was identified as Tikboy Kinilis, head of SII security manning the coffee plantation, a certain Johny and one unidentified man, armed with M14 high powered rifle each.

The report said Kinilis asked for the whereabouts of the survey team who conducted delineation mapping in neighboring areas from January 20 to 30, 2009 and told Anaw that the areas inside the plantation should not be included. "Siling nya panginmatyan gid daw nila kung surbihon ang plantasyon" Anaw narrated. (He said that they are ready to die if survey will be conducted in the plantation).

The Legal Rights Center- Kasama sa Kalikasan/ Friends of the Earth Philippines (LRC-KsK/FOE) Davao Regional Office, which has been assisting TAMASCO communities since 2000, calls on the authorities to look into the issue and ensure that the perimeter survey will be completed soon. "With the start of the official delineation of their ancestral domain, the T'bolis will definitely earn the ire of the Consunjis.

The NCIP should be able to address as well the security of the communities," says Erwin Quinones, campaigns paralegal of the LRC-Davao. "On the other hand, the NCIP should recognize the urgency of the delineation process."

TAMASCO's claim forms part of an application for Certificate of Ancestral Domain Title (CADT) covering an estimated 16,000 hectares of land by T'boli Ubo Claimants Organization (TUCO).

The Tri-Peoples Concern for Peace, Progress and Development of Mindanao, Inc (TRICOM) and LRC has been in assisting in the processing of the Certificate of Ancestral Domain Title (CADT) of TUCO filed in 1999. (NCIP/PIA XI) [top]

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