MANILA The House Committee on Indigenous Cultural Communities (ICCs) and Indigenous Peoples (IPs) is eyeing to craft a resolution seeking to include IPs' concerns in the national policy agenda of President Rodrigo Duterte.
During a committee hearing on the complaints of various Lumad leaders regarding the continuing atrocities of the New People's Army against IPs, North Cotabato Rep. Nancy Catamco urged the panel to pass a resolution for the government to prioritize the concerns of IPs and be highlighted in the 10-point socioeconomic agenda of the President.
"It's about time for this committee to pass a resolution (highlighting) that the concerns and issues of the IPs should be part of the national policy agenda of the President," Catamco said.
Meanwhile, ANAC-IP party-list Rep. Jose Panganiban Jr. stressed the need to provide a higher budget for the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) to address the plight of IPs when it comes to peace and development.
NCIP chairperson Leonor Oralde-Quintayo, on the other hand, called for a whole-of-government approach to address insurgency, noting that her agency alone cannot address it.
"The budgetary constraints should not hamper the efforts of the government to address the insurgency. This is a time of convergence where all government agencies will contribute and try to address as a whole the issue on insurgencies," Oralde-Quintayo said.
Presidential adviser for indigenous peoples' concerns Allen Capuyan echoed NCIP's position, noting that the whole-of-government approach is the way-to-go given President Duterte's zeal to quell communist insurgencies.
"We must believe that it can be done, and it must be done," Capuyan said. (PNA)
Source: Philippine News Agency