An Indigenous People's group attends the Dagyaw Festival to raise their concerns to the delegates. (Ace Sapit/PIAMIMAROPA)

MAMBURAO, Occidental Mindoro — The last leg of DAGYAW: Open Government and Participatory Governance Regional Townhall Meeting was held today at the Provincial Training Center, Capitol Complex, Mamburao, Occidental Mindoro.

The event was spearheaded by the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Department of Budget and Management (DBM), with the support of the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO).

Hundreds of stakeholders from civil society organizations, non-government organizations, academe, local officials, business sector, transport groups, Indigenous People (IPs), and the media were present to address several issues and concerns experienced in the locality.

Dir. Ulysses E. Feraren, Provincial Director of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Mimaropa acknowledged the guests and encouraged the participants to utter all of their concerns.

“Handa na silang magbigay ng suporta nang sa gayon makita natin ang magandang buhay lalo na ang mga kabataan na magsisilbing ilaw ng ating kinabukasan. Magsisilbing gabay at malaking tulong ang mga partner agencies upang ang Dagyaw ay maging matagumpay (They are ready to give support, so we can fulfill the ‘good life’, especially for the youth. Our partner agencies are here to guide us to ensure that this event will be a success)’’, Feraren said.

On the other hand, DILG Mimaropa Regional Director Wilhelm M. Suyko underscored the significance of the event to the people of the province.

“Di nga ba’t sadyang mahirap na wala tayong alam at katulong sa pagpapatupad ng mga programa ng mga ahensya ng gobyerno? Kaya naman ito ang nais na ipabatid ng administrasyong Duterte sa pangunguna ng mga gabinete at iba pang ahensya ng pamahalaan na maabot at malaman ng mga Pilipino ang mga programa na makakatulong sa kanila (Isn’t it simply hard that we are not aware of how and who implements the development programs of the government agencies? That’s why the Duterte administration, through the cabinet members, wanted to reach out to and make every Filipino aware about the programs of government agencies that may help them),’’ Suyko said.

Occidental Mindoro Governor Eduardo B. Gadiano expresses his message of support to the officials, guests and participants of Dagyaw. He said that this kind of event promotes unity among the government and community in all provinces of the country. With this program, the locality especially the IPs will be heard by the government.

For his part, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Alexei Nograles discussed the rationale in the holding of Dagyaw all over the country and why it is regarded as an important activity by the government.

‘’Ang pag-ikot ng Dagyaw Festival sa buong bansa ay isa sa mga itinutulak natin para makuha mula sa mga kababayan natin ano ang mga pinaka- importanteng issues and concerns para matugunan at masagot ng gobyerno (The Dagyaw Festival goes around nationwide so that we can hear from our countrymen – what are their most important issues and concerns, so the government can respond)’’, Nograles said.

Indigenous people

In order to protect and promote the interest and well-being of the IPs with due regard to their belief, customs, traditions, and institutions through formulation and implementation of policies, plans, and programs, the National Commission on Indigenous People (NCIP) was created, as provided under Republic Act. No. 8371.

In doing so, Sec. Nograles enumerates the projects of the NCIP for Mimaropa Region: 1. Financial Assistance on Review for the Licensure Examination for Teachers and other professional Board Examination in Mimaropa; 2. Support to IP Month Celebration; 3. Distribution of Vegetable Seeds and Corn Farming in Sablayan and Calintaan, Occidental Mindoro; 4. Educational Assistance Program (EAP) in Mimaropa and Calabarzon; 5. Education Assistance Program (EAP) in Occidental and Oriental Mindoro; and Merit-Based Scholarship Program in Mimaropa and Calabarzon. (GATS/PIAMimaropa/OccMin)