Board Member Nieves Rosento, Tata Balladares, Atty. Bobby Chan, together with Australian journalist and Delikado Director Karl Malakunas and the Palawan NGO Network Inc. (PNNI) at the closing ceremonies of Cinemalaya 18 held at the Cultural Center of the Philippines. (Photo Courtesy of Palawan NGO Network Inc.)

“Delikado” film received a standing ovation from over 1,400 people at the recently concluded Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival 2022 Closing and Awards Night, held at the Cultural Center of the Philippines.

The award-winning documentary was one of the chosen films to close this year’s festival on August 14.

The crowd warmly applauded the environmental crusaders, including former El Nido mayor and now 1st District Board Member Nieves Rosento, Atty. Bobby Chan, and Efren “Tata” Balladares of the Palawan NGO Network Inc. (PNNI), as they were called for a question and answer segment after the documentary premiered for the first time in the Philippines.

The film tells the story of land defenders and environmental heroes in Palawan, the country’s “Last Frontier.”

It shows how a paradise like Palawan has become more of a battlefield for these defenders, as they put their lives on the line to fight corruption, injustice, human rights violations, and many other challenges.

In their Facebook post, PNNI said that the film was not just about environmental justice in Palawan but also “a gathering of friends, a coming together of civil society, and a celebration of faith in God.”

Delikado was directed by Australian journalist Karl Malakunas, who was motivated to make the film after seeing the life-threatening dangers that communities and defenders face in protecting the country’s natural resources.

The film project started in 2017 and finished in 2019 before the pandemic. In June, Delikado won the Sustainable Future Award and was a finalist for Best Australian Documentary at the 69th Sydney Film Festival. It was also an official selection for the Doc Edge Film Festival, Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, Human Rights Watch Film Festival, Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival, and a Tim Herrington Award Nominee at the Sheffield Doc Fest 2022.


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is a student-intern reporter of Palawan News and is currently taking up Bachelor of Arts in Communication and Media Studies at University of the Philippines Visayas. She covers special reports in tourism, business and other human interest stories. Her interests includes singing, painting, and volunteering in civic organizations like the Girl Scouts of the Philippines.