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Metro

IP leaders stage protest at NCIP

Rhodina Villanueva - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - Leaders of indigenous peoples and environment advocates held a rally in front of the National Commission for Indigenous Peoples building in Quezon City yesterday, accusing the NCIP of continued inaction on killings of IPs around the country.

“The NCIP’s mandate is to protect and promote the interests and well-being of the indigenous peoples. Today, we have a list of indigenous peoples killed because they were defending their rights and promoting the interests of their communities. Sadly, the list is getting longer. And so we ask, where is the NCIP in all of this? Its silence is deafening,” said Judy Pasimio, national coordinator of Lilak-Purple Action for Indigenous Women’s Rights.

She said during the Aquino administration alone, about 30 people have been killed for defending the IP’s ancestral domain.

“This list includes at least two women and four minors, a proof how inhumane and wanton the state-sponsored violence against the IPs is,” Pasimio said.

Ed Garingan, anti-mining campaigner of civil society network Philippine Misereor Partnership Incorporated (PMPI), said the IP killings, even in the past, are related to mining on IP land.

“The NCIP also has something to explain about this, as a number of free prior informed consent (FPIC) processes of some mining projects are very questionable,” he said.

Garingan said the NCIP should be alarmed by the continuing militarization of ancestral domain areas in the countryside.

Jaybee Garganera of Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) said what they are demanding is “an NCIP that stands for the IPs against all odds.”

Lilak and ATM are members of the Tampakan Forum, a network of groups supporting the struggle of the B’laan community and the campaign of the Diocese of Marbel’s social action center against the mining project in Tampakan, South Cotabato. The PMPI serves as the network’s secretariat.

ACIRC

DIOCESE OF MARBEL

ED GARINGAN

INDIGENOUS PEOPLES

INDIGENOUS WOMEN

JAYBEE GARGANERA OF ALYANSA TIGIL MINA

JUDY PASIMIO

LILAK-PURPLE ACTION

NATIONAL COMMISSION

PHILIPPINE MISEREOR PARTNERSHIP INCORPORATED

QUEZON CITY

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