TINOC, Ifugao – Authorities in the province are hopeful the launching of a book that features the reported last campsite of Japanese Imperial Army Gen. Tomoyuki Yamashita during the World War II will propel the promotion of the tourism industry here.
The book entitled, “Bungubung Tunnel, Ang Huling Kanlungan ni Heneral Tomoyuki Yamashita,” was launched last week with National Commission on Indigenous Peoples and Historical Tourism consultant, retired B/Gen. Ramon Yogyog, as guest speaker.
Dr. Chrisol B. Catalino of Tinoc and Dr. Aida A. Paraguison of Isabela authored the book that highlights the Bungubung Tunnel in Barangay Wangwang in this town as the last campsite of Yamashita from July 1 to Sept. 1, 1945 before surrendering to American forces in Kiangan on Sept. 2.
The Bungubung Tunnel is about two hours hike from the Wangwang Elementary School. The 15-meter tunnel is believed to be man-made.
Yogyog said the book will market the province to local and international historical tourists.
“It will also support our ideas and plans on historical tourism development planning and programming for the next 12 years,” he said.
Vice Gov. Glenn Prudenciano said he supports the idea of developing the site as a historical landmark and tourist spot.
Tinoc Municipal Administrator Efren Tacio and Wangwang Punong Barangay Bonifacio Dumanop thanked the authors for conducting the researches and the provincial local government unit for their support.
Board Member Orlando Addug said the book launching serves as an inspiration and challenge to all Ifugao writers to take the lead in writing and documenting the chronicles of the rich cultures and traditions.
Catalino said the book is for the Ifugaos and not for the authors.
“Coming up with the book is not a walk in the park as it drained personal time, effort, and money since it is an advocacy, not a paid endeavor, but no legacy is richer than a cultural and historical heritage,” he said.
The launching was also attended by board members Agustin Calyaen, Noli Maguiwe, and Joselito Guyguyon; Jonas Dupo, the consultant and representatives from the provincial offices; NCIP; 54th Infantry Battalion; and Ifugao State University. – Marcelo B. Lihgawon