April 30, 2006


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Marker for abducted Kalinga peace pact holder unveiled

BAGUIO CITY (Apr. 28) — Delegates to the 22nd Cordillera Day unveiled a marker on April 22 in memory of the heroism Ama Daniel Ngayaan offered the Cordillera peoples until his disappearance at Cagaluan in Pasil, Kalinga some 19 years ago.

According to Ama Julio Longan, a peace pact holder and vice chair of the Binodngan People’s Organization (BPO), the marker would serve as a reminder of the heroic deeds of Ama Ngayaan in the defense of ancestral land from destructive government projects. He added that Ama Ngayaan’s life story should be passed on to the younger generation.

An ecumenical service was also held to bless the said marker. Family, relatives, friends and delegates to the 22nd Cordillera Day attended the said service.

Ama Ngayaan’s daughter Joan welcomed the creation of the marker. She said her family would have wanted to forget the misfortune but with the marker people will recall Ama Ngayaan’s sacrifice and contribution to the people’s movement to protect land, life and resources and his life story shall be retold.

Ama Ngayaan was one of the Kalinga leaders who strongly opposed the Chico River Basin Development Project during the Marcos regime. He was one of the 150 leaders and elders of lower Kalinga arrested in 1976 for opposing the said project. Ama Ngayaan along with those arrested were released in 1977 due to the wide and unified actions of different support groups.

In 1986, Ama Ngayaan succeeded Cordillera Bodong Association (CBA) when the Chairman Mario Yag-ao joined the Cordillera People’s Liberation Army (CPLA) and collaborated with the government in the latter’s anti-insurgency campaign. Ngayaan was the last CBA chairman.

Sources recalled that on October 5, 1987, after a Cordillera Peoples Alliance (CPA) meeting, CPLA members abducted Ama Ngayaan at the Cagaluan gate while on his way home to Tanglag and remained missing to date.

According to Joan, the government has not done anything to arrest her father’s abductors. Instead the CPLA was integrated into the Philippine National Police (PNP), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and Citizen’s Armed Forces Geographical Unit (CAFGU) by the Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo administration. # Kim Quitasol for NORDIS

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