Photo from SC - Indigenous Peoples Games Facebook page

The city government is seeking to institutionalize the Palarong Katutubo in order to acknowledge the indigenous peoples’ (IP) traditional and cultural games.

City Councilor Nesario Awat, chair of the City Council’s legal affairs committee, said Tuesday to Palawan News that the goal is to recognize the “Palarong Katutubo” because Puerto Princesa is home to IPs such as the Tagbanua and Batak.

“Ito ay pagkilala sa kanilang larong katutubo. Alam naman natin na ang lungsod ng Puerto Princesa ay identified na may mga katutubo. Pangalawa, tayo ay tourist destination. Kung ito ay magagawa taon-taon at ma-enhance ‘yong kanilang laro ay magandang atraksyon rin ito para sa ating turista,” Awat said.

It also hopes to foster “camaraderie” among indigenous cultural communities (ICCs) and to recognize their “larong katutubo” not just in the city, but across Palawan, and in other parts of the country.

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He also said acknowledging the IPs’ traditional games helps their social, emotional stability, mental learning, and physical abilities.

“At magkakaroon talaga ng camaraderie among the indigenous cultural communities dahil sila ay magkakaroon ng taong laro na pagkatutubo at syempre makikilala rin yong kanilang laro dito sa lungsod ng Puerto Princesa at eventually sa lalawigan ng Palawan,” Awat said.

“Alam naman natin na ‘yong mga katutubo ay isang grupo na kung saan ay napabayaan na ng pamahalaan. They were deprived in terms of privileges given by the national government,” he added.

Awat said he has yet to look through the list of traditional IP games. According to him, the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) recognizes these traditional games as well.

“Yong mga palaro na ito ay talagang ginagawa ng mga katutubo pero ‘di ko mabibigay specifically dahil ‘di ko pa nakita kung ano itong mga palaro na ito pero ito ay mga kataga na talagang nagiging laro ng mga katutubo at ito rin ay kinikilala ng PSC ‘yong mga laro na pang katutubo,” Awat said.

“In general enumerated ‘yong mga laro base doon sa ordinance,” he added.

Gaming prizes will be included in the 2022 budget, he said. The plan is to implement it on October 22 in time for IP Month.

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