Davao del Norte - Indigenous peoples (IPs) should know better than roam the city streets begging or being exploited by progressive groups in pursuing their leftist agenda.
Governor Edwin Jubahib told IPs to turn their vast ancestral lands into production areas, instead of venturing into cities where they suffer abuses and discrimination.
“Ngano moadto pa man mo sa siyudad... Ayaw mo biya sa inyong yuta... mananum mo, mamuhi mo’g hayop. Kay diha mo mokita ug molambo (Why go to the city. Do not leave your land... engage in crop and livestock production. That’s where you earn income and prosper),” the governor said, during the 3rd DavNor Adlaw sa Kalinaw.
About a thousand IPs from 12 sitios were once more treated with a flurry of government services and assistance at the peace caravan in Sitio Nasilaban, Palma Gil, Talaingod, Davao del Norte on May 5, 2021.
Jubahib, who is fondly called “Kuya Gob”, asked the tribespeople to work harder and to help protect their villages and drive away communist terrorist groups (CTGs).
He once again urged the IP leaders to persuade their families and relatives still with the CTGs to return to the folds of the government, including those who are still being holed up at the UCCP-Haran.
Among the 12 tribal leaders who affirmed their commitment to help the government was Nasilaban Chieftain Datu Guibang Apoga.
The tribal chief, who is the founder of Salugpungan Ta Tanu Igcanogon, waged war with the government for about three decades, until he surrendered in 2018 to army officials, together with Jubahib who was on his private capacity then.
Jubahib said that the peace caravan, which was brought by the provincial government, in collaboration with the national agencies, army, police and charity groups and indidividuals, shows the sincerity of the government in improving the lot of the IPs.
It can be remembered that the IPs in Talaingod were the first beneficiaries of the governor’s KAwsa sa AGrikulturA ug PAnginabuhian sa barangaY (KAAGAPAY) program, which was launched last year to combat food shortage during the pandemic.
Thousands of seedlings for diversified farming systems, integrating vegetable and livestock raising, were given to the tribal farmers to provide them not only nutritious food, but also source of gainful income.
They have since harvested tons of vegetables and chicken, which the provincial government has been marketing, with the help of the army and the police.
Complementing the province’s planting program in the far-flung IP community is the national government’s 5-year greening program for 95 hectares of ancestral domain worth P1.25 million.
The growing of forest and fruit trees and high-value crops will be managed by the Nasilaban Tribal Farmers’ Association.
Joining the peace caravan were Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP)-Eastern Mindanao Area Manager Oliver Binansilan, 56th IB Commander Col. Norman Valdez, DNPPO Deputy Provincial Director for Operations PCol. Julius Borja, Provincial Administrator Engr. Josie Jean Rabanoz and provincial department heads, PENRO Provincial Director Victor Villones, TESDA Provincial Director Arlyn Bandong, businessman Allan Tan, and representatives from the DILG, DTI, DepEd, DSWD, DOLE, and PIA, among other agencies.