Provincial IPMR Purita Seguritan. (Screenshot from Junta Barita Facebook page)

Magsaysay town’s Sangguniang Bayan is not keen on appointing an indigenous people’s mandatory representative (IPMR) as mandated by the Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Act (IPRA) law.

Reacting to provincial IPMR Purita Seguritan’s privilege speech this week pointing to the absence of an indigenous sector representative in the town council, Association of Barangay Captains (ABC) president Magsaysay Armando Alvarez said there simply is no fund allocated for the position in the municipal level.

He said that they are not opposed to confirming any IPMR nominee, but are limited by a lack of funding.

“Kasi ang consideration ng sangguniang bayan ay ang pondo. Kapag naglagay kami ng IPMR ay lampas na kami doon sa pondo na dapat ay ‘yon lang ang dapat gamitin,” he said.

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“Hindi kami against kung sino ang ilagay nila dahil ang problema lang talaga wala lang pondo,” Alvarez added.

He proposed that the IPMR in Magsaysay town be funded by the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP).

Aside from this, he added that there is no need for an IPMR to be appointed at the municipal level because all citizens are Cuyonon.

“Isang ethnic group lang ang nasa lugar namin, although dalawa kaming munisipyo doon ay same lang kami na mga Cuyunon. Kung tutuusin ay lahat din kami ay IP pero siguro it’s time to ask NCIP kung ano ba talaga ang dapat gawin,” he said.

The provincial board recently issued a resolution reminding all local government entities to recognize the IPMR at every local legislative council according to the mandate of the IPRA law.

“Ang nangyayari kasi sa ibang LGU ay hindi nire-recognize ang IPMR kagaya po sa Magsaysay na hanggang ngayon ay wala pang nagti-take oath,” Provincial IPMR Purita Seguritan said in her sponsorship speech in regular session on March 15.

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is the chief of correspondents of Palawan News. She covers defense, politics, tourism, health, and sports stories. She loves to travel and explore different foods.