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RNIP Meets Dumagats
 
 

RNIP-PCU meets the Dumagat of Palanan, Isabela

RNIP Director Rolando Modina and Asst. Director Dante Aquino were invited by ISU President Romeo Quilang to go to the historic town of Palanan, Isabela (where Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo, the first President of the Philippines, was captured by an American General) on July 28-29, 2005 to meet the Dumagat. The Dumagat are the negrito aborigines of the Philippines who stay along the shores of the Pacific Ocean (the tagalog word dagat means 'sea', while dumagat means 'of the sea'). Their counterparts in the mountains are called either Agta or Agay.

In June 2005, the Isabela State University opened a campus in Palanan, Isabela catering to residents within the coastal towns of Isabela who can hardly afford to study in towns in the valley because of inaccessibility that one has to spend a fortune to fly in and out of the area passing over the vast Sierra Madre mountain range. With the University plans to provide extension services to the people of the area, among them the Dumagat, RNIP-PCU was invited to look at the situation of the Dumagat and possibly find ways that they could be involved with RNIP activities.

Meeting with almost 50 Dumagat who came from various parts of coastal and interior Palanan and Municipal Mayor Natividad Bernardo, RNIP-PCU explained the mechanics by which RNIP establish partnership with CSOs involved with indigenous peoples such as the Dumagat. ISU Palanan campus staff and the leader of the Dumagat were provided the guidelines on the RNIP Trust Fund for possible collaboration in the future.



 

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