The United Nations General Assembly through Resolution 49/ 214 dated December 23, 1994 has marked August 9 as
International Day of World’s Indigenous Peoples with the objective to raise awareness on the needs of the IPs around the globe. Celebrating the World IP Day surely provides venue for us in the Cordillera to also promote our rich culture and tradition, and the need for these to be properly recognized.

It is for this reason that the Cordillera People’s Alliance (CPA) invited the public to join their activity in line with the
commemoration of the International Day of World’s Indigenous Peoples on August 6, 2022. In their post prior to the
event, the CPA claimed that their celebration will include roundtable discussions on the #DefendCordilleraPH campaign on August 6-7, 2022 and IP Day Mobilization on August 9, 2022.

While the CPA activities seem relevant and consistent with the celebration, may we all be reminded of how this group has been hijacking Cordillera events to the point of holding their own Cordillera Day celebration every April 24 when the true and legitimate Cordillera Day is observed every 15th of July. For years, the CPA has monopolized the claim of championing Cordillera IP rights, which they project during their so-called Cordillera Day and the observance of the World IP Day.

Their activities during these days are full of agitation over their allegations against the government being neglectful or worse oppressive of the IPs. Thus, they turn IP events from information awareness into lamentation and
litany of their complaints on issues that are already being addressed such as dialogues with IPs on use of resources in
ancestral domains, among others. Let us not allow the CPA to ruin this year’s IP Day with their rehashed and senseless statements that are designed to solicit sympathy and deceive the Cordillerans. We can hold our own well meaning celebration. After all, the day is about us, about our history, our struggle. It is not about whatever political agenda the CPA has.

Ma. Louisa Foligan

Amianan Balita Ngayon