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PIA Press Release

NCIP to celebrate "1st Paggarammungan Festival" for Cagayan IPs

Tuguegarao City (30 October) -- The National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) Region 2 in partnership with the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCAA) and the Provincial Government of Cagayan will spearhead the first "Paggarammungan Festival" to celebrate the day for the Indigenous Peoples of Cagayan province.

With the theme: "Strengthening the Solidarity of the Indigenous Peoples (IPs) of Cagayan for Sustainable Development", the IP groups of Cagayan which include the Aeta, Malaueg, Ibanag, Itawes and the Ibatan will come together and showcase their rich culture heritage.

NCIP Regional Director Ruben S. Bastero said the IPs gathering is envisioned to unite, empower and sustain the tribal groups' cultural, artistic life and heritage that fosters unity and development among indigenous peoples in Cagayan.

Bastero said the program will empower the Indigenous Cultural Communities to attain lasting peace, prosperity and preserve their cultural integrity as a way of life in line with national development.

In cooperation with other line agencies such as the Department of Tourism Region 2, Philippine Information Agency (PIA) Region 2 Provincial Tourism Office, Local Government Units with IPs and the Indigenous Peoples Organization, the plan for the IPs day celebration is made possible.

As part of the program, the IPs with some employees of the different line agencies will have a parade around the city on November 5, 2009 and to be followed by a program at Leonardo Mamba Gym, Cagayan National High School, Tuguegarao City.

Mr. Victor Calingayan of NCIP and Chair of the Technical Working Group for the affair, said selected groups of IPs will showcase their well preserved culture and traditions through a cultural presentation.

Ms. Josephine Lopez of PSWD-Cagayan said a photo exhibit and a product display of IPs will be viewed at the said gym to showcase their livelihood and life status. She further informed that the Provincial Government of Cagayan has allotted funds to support the activity and promised to strengthen more the activities and programs for the IPs in recognition to their rights as the original settlers of the province.

Meantime, Mr. Nap Baltazar, Executive Committee Member of NCAA, said a forum for IPs will be held also to give them time to air their issues and concerns to the regional and provincial line agencies.

"This is the perfect avenue for the IPs to air their problems and issues to the government, especially on the matters that affect their livelihood and ancestral domains," Baltazar said. (Oliver B/PIA 2) [top]

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