Issue of February 7, 2016

Baguio Day Anniversary Issue
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Heritage protection in Benguet mulled
by Susan C. Aro / PIA

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – A member of the provincial board is pushing for the identification of all heritage sites in the province for purposes of preservation and protection.

In a proposed ordinance, Board Member Blas Dalus sought the inclusion of heritage sites that are not in the list the Provincial Tourism Office.

Dalus said there are sites that need to be protected but are yet to be identified and validated by the PTO.

Provincial Tourism Operations Officer Clarita Prudencio said the office identified heritage sites and events that need to be safeguarded.

Many historical sites are in Kabayan, such as the Pyramid or the Kineppol ni Nabaloi located at the municipal grounds at Poblacion. It was constructed around three centuries ago.

Others are the tomb of Henry A. Kamora, the “Grand Old Man of Kabayan,” and the Tinongshol and Bangao burial caves, abode of centuries-old mummies.

Also among the historical sites are Mt. Pulag, the highest peak in Luzon and second in the country; Mt. Timbac  with its burial caves and  centuries-old mummies; imprinted large footprints on big solid rocks believed to be footprints of the legendary Besang found in barangays Ducan, Adaoay and Pacso; and Tabalan Hill.

There are also the Embosi, the first Ibaloi settlement found in Pacso; Bulalakaw Lake, the abode of the huge flying fish called bulalakaw; Dabonay Yard in barangay Kabayan Barrio where Dabonay, the lone husky Kabayan lady heroine, who wrestled and pinned down a male enemy; Cariño Cave in Talukip, Eddet where then Gov. Ora Cariño hid and was later captured by the Americans in 1900; and Manenchen, the site of the massacre of the residents of Eddet during the Japanese Imperial Army.

Other historical sites are found in Kapangan, namely Camp Utopia, the sanctuary of the 66th Infantry Regime-Philippine Army in World War II; Darew Ancient Ruins of Civilization on the top of the mountain where trading, intermarriage, and alliances were forged; Katampan Burial Ground in Bileng-Bilis; and Dakiwagan Burial Ground in Balakbak.

In Buguias, the historical site is the Mummy Apo Anno Cave in Nabalicong, the adobe of the legendary mummy Apo Anno stolen from his burial cave sometime in the 1920s, and returned in 1998.

For cultural sites, there are the Talingguroy Burial Ground in Wangal, the Peril Mummy Cave in Alapang in La Trinidad, and the Mount Santo Tomas burial sites 1 and 2 in Tuba.

Cultural events are also counted as heritage like the Bendiyan Festival held every May and the Adivay every November.

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