RTNMC launches its cultural literacy program to preserve the local tradition of Palaw'an tribe in Bataraza (Photo courtesy of RTNMC Community Relations)

The Rio Tuba Nickel Mining Corporation (RTNMC) has launched a cultural literacy program to preserve the culture and traditions of the Palaw’an tribe in Bataraza municipality.

Iskandar Sali, RTNMC community organizer, said Tuesday that the cultural literacy program has eight sessions a month which include lectures, activities, and performances for the students.

Sali said that elders of the Pala’wan indigenous peoples (IP) are serving as the instructor of the students.

“Eight sessions a month ito, every Saturday and Sunday then around three hours. ‘Yong mga nagtuturo sa kanila ay ang mga elders din from Palaw’an tribe kasi sila naman ang nakakaalam ng mga original na mga sayaw at mga musika,” he said.

He said that the program is under the Social Development Management Program (SDMP) of RTNMC which aims to educate IP youth and elders of traditional dance and music such as Taruk, Sapa-sapa, and Basal.

The program will preserve traditional kinds of music and dances by passing it to the new generation, she said.

“Basically, kaya may ganitong program ay para ma-preserve ang kultura ng ating mga katutubo lalo na ngayon [may millenial na] kaya mas maganda pa rin na matutunan sya ng bagong henerasyon at ‘yon din naman ang gusto ni RTN,” he said.

Sali said that cultural literacy is conducted in the Bahay Tarukan of the Palaw’an, where they also gather for every activity and gathering.

The cultural literacy program was launched in Sitio Proper, Barangay Sandoval, in Bataraza with around 25 participants on May 11.

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