Cordillera Autonomy : A History in the making
The celebration of Macli-ing Dulag Memorial commemorates the life and death of a hero from the Cordilleras in search of its autonomy. It is celebrated every 24th of April since it began in 1981, 30 years ago in honor of his first death anniversary. People from all walks of life came to witness this event; most of them also did a big part in making the occasion possible. These people were lawyers, catholic priests and other students from the University of the Philippines.
The people came to mourn and see the ceremonies for it was the first death anniversary of Pangat only to find out that it was the opposite of what they have expected. “We celebrated the birth and growth of a people in struggle.” (Alejandro, 1981) This has become the opening for the Kalingas to market for growth, and made the experience a source of moral and physical strength to combat old and new problems.
After so, the Macli-ing Dulag Memorial became a venue for people to meet and discuss and to celebrate their independence and diverse culture. Different delegations from the different sectors from Cordilleras and around the Philippines and foreign countries also came to join.
The Cordillera Peoples Alliance for the Defense of Ancestral Domain (CPA) was established in the year 1984. This was made for the sole purpose of protection and struggle for the indigenous peoples’ ancestral domains.
This has been a tradition until 1985 when the Macli-ing Dulag Memorial was changed to what we celebrate now as the Cordillera Day. This motion was too commemorate too all the other martyrs from the Cordillera who sacrificed their lives while fighting for their rights for their ancestral domains and fighting against the oppression of the government.
As we know, we celebrate two different dates when it comes to the autonomy of the Cordilleras. The first is the one to commemorate Macli-ing Dulag (April 24) and the second one is the...