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Issue of September 2, 2018
     
NEWS
Benguet
Mt. Province
 
OPINION
 

2018
Panagbenga Flower Festival
 
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Tadian barangays create council of elders
by PIA release

TADIAN, Mountain Province – The 19 barangays of this town will establish their council of elders to ensure continued respect and protection of customs and traditions, cultural practices, and beliefs.

Municipal Ordinance 22, s. 2017 is in consonance with  Provincial Ordinance 281 entitled: “A code to institutionalize the use of customary laws in conflict resolution and peace building processes and to create and organize the council of elders/leaders in all barangays of Mountain Province;” and with National Commission on Indigenous Peoples Administrative Order 2, s. 2012 which sets the guidelines on the confirmation of indigenous political structures and registration of indigenous people organizations with the end in view of having a systematic resolution of disputes in accordance with customary laws culled out from their indigenous culture and beliefs.

The sanggunian bayan noted that considering that indigenous elders/leaders emerged from the dynamics of customary laws and practice, they are considered as recognized authority on conflict resolutions and peace building processes, hence they lend and assist the community in decision-making processes aimed at protecting and promoting sustainable development of their ancestral domains.

The council of elders is tasked to encourage people participation and empowerment in the development of its ancestral domain such as the joint project being undertaken by local government unit of Tadian, Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the NCIP in the implementation of sustainable traditional indigenous forest resources management systems and practices or the “batangan” ordinance of the municipality and other future pro-indigenous peoples rights projects.

They shall ensure the respect and protection of customs and traditions, cultural practices, beliefs, and sacred places including burial sites, hunting and fishing grounds, religious or worship areas and watershed areas; strengthen IPs, system and institutions, defend, protect and develop the ancestral domain/ancestral lands; promote the use of traditional justice systems, conflict resolution, institution or peace building process; exercise its right to participate at all levels of decision making to determine the policies, development programs, projects  and plans within the community; initiate the indigenous settlement of disputes within alienable and disposable lands to establish security, peace and order to refrain from external intrusion and manipulation; assist in all community related development program; and to issue a certificate to file action in matters that cannot be settled amicably.
The council of elders shall have a term of three years.

An executive committee shall be organized and composed of 19 members chosen from each of the council of elders in every barangay with the municipal indigenous peoples mandatory representative as chairman of the committee.

 
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