BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan urged different indigenous peoples (IPs) from the different parts of the Cordillera to sustain the unity that was passed on to them by their ancestors to help in maintaining peace and order in the areas where they are based.
The local chief executive told IPS who attended the IP thanksgiving celebration of Commissioner Gaspar Cayat of the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) to strengthen the bond of unity for them to move on to greater heights, especially in the realization of their individual and collective aspirations.
“We must continue passing on to the present and future generations the bond of unity that has been passed on to us by our ancestors because it is through our ability to unite amidst our diverse culture and traditions that have made us unique from the others,” Mayor Domogan stressed.
He pointed out that IPs should also continue bringing out the best in themselves to help sustain the unique identity of Baguio city as one of the preferred tourist destination in the country as visitors want to see the Cordillerans in their native attire.
According to him, IPs today have become resilient and are now bold enough to wear their native attire unlike before when only few of them brave enough to join the dance group of their institutions and perform in public using their native attire.
Domogan underscored that IPs have proven their worth in their chosen fields of expertise worldwide and many continue to bring honor and pride to their tribes over the years, thus, IPs have made clear that they are people who are able to adjust to the prevailing situation.
The Cordillera is predominantly composed of IPs, almost 92 percent of the population, who come from different tribes and Baguio is the melting pot of different cultures not only from the region but also from other parts of the country.
He explained that even in the conduct of parades, pupils in the elementary level have become brave by starting things right as they are already able to wear their native attire and perform tribal dances gracefully.
The city mayor emphasized that IPs have also been empowered by their fellow IPs who succeeded in their chosen fields of expertise considering their active involvement and excelling in sports, governance, arts and culture, business, among others.
Domogan traces his roots to Patiacan, Quirino, Ilocos Sur which is situated within its border with Besao, Mountain Province.
Like most of the IPs, he acquired higher level of education through hard work, perseverance, patience and the desire to help in moving his family out of the shackles of poverty.
The IP thanksgiving was an initiative of NCIP Commission Cayat to gather all the IPs in the city and different parts of the region to express their gratitude for the success of their fellow IPs, especially in their chosen fields of expertise.
By Dexter A. See