Butbut-Betwagan tribes eye  'Sipat' to settle conflict

TINGLAYAN, Kalinga, Jan.12 (PIA) - -  The second round  of  dialogue  brokered by  Philippine  National Police- Cordillera Regional Office  for the settlement of  tribal boundary dispute  between Butbut in Tinglayan, Kalinga and Betwagan in Sadanga, Mountain Province  resulted to  representatives from both sides  agreeing in principle for a “Sipat” or peace pact.

|In a meeting among parties  at the Kalinga-Mt. Province boundary (Mamaga) on January 8, speakers centered on the primary goal of restoring peace to save lives, avoid destruction of properties, preservation of animals raised in the disputed area, continuing economic activities without fear, and harmonious co-existence.

 Sadanga Mayor Gabino Ganggangan suggested for the enforcement of past agreements, seek mechanisms on how to enforce conditions of the ceasefire and agree on enforceable provisions.

“There has to be a “Sipat” in order to account responsibility and to have confidence in the furtherance of peace dialogues,” he stressed.
“Sipat” is an exchange of peace tokens after naming interim peacepact holders. It will serve as a bridge mechanism to pursue peace initiatives and the holders as overseers of continuing dialogue.
William Abay of the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) suggested that the Indigenous Peoples Mandatory Representatives of the concerned barangays be named as “Sipat” holders.  Bugnay barangay IPMR of Bugnay readily accepted the assignment however, Betwagan withhold its acceptance pending the presentation of the proposal before the tribe.  

PROCOR BG R"win Pagkalinawan  stresses  on the application of traditional conflict resolutions in solving the boundary dispute.

Kalinga Provincial Administrator William Puday Jr. assured the support of the provincial local government unit to the efforts of the PNP and the Armed Forces of the Philippines in brokering the peacetalks.

PRO-COR Brigadier General R’win Pagkalinawan, who initiated the dialogue between the two tribes last year,  committed to continue building confidence between the warring tribes through cultural practices, pursuing on workable solutions to the dispute based on traditional boundary settlement and gathering of evidences from documents.
The dialogue was also attended by representatives from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Dept. of Agriculture, Dept. of Public Works and Highways and the Philippine Information Agency, some neutral tribes and respective of concerned party’s local government units with full participation also of the provincial police offices, the 503rd Infantry Brigade and 50th Infantry Battalion of the Philippine Army. (JDP/PAB-PIA CAR, Kalinga)


Source: Philippines Information Agency (pia.gov.ph)

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