Comval guv supports Salugpungan suspension

NABUNTURAN, Compostela Valley, July 19 (PIA) – – Compostela Valley Governor Jayvee Tyron Uy is supporting the order from the Department of Education XI (Deped) suspending schools operated by Salugpungan Ta Tanu Igkanogon.

According to the Deped Compostela Valley, 15 out of the 55 schools suspended are located in the province.

In a statement, Governor Uy stressed that for ten years of existence in Compostela Valley, the administration of the Salugpungan schools had not consulted the local government in the province.

“As Governor and former Chair of the Regional Peace and Order Council XI, we also received complaints on the failure of these schools to secure free, prior and informed consents (FPIC) from the communities where they operate, as mandated by the Indigenous People’s Rights Act,” the governor said.

Governor Uy hoped that the issues surrounding the suspension will be cleared up, following a free and unbiased inquiry.

Last July 12, Deped XI Regional Director Evelyn Fetalvero issued a suspension order to the Salugpungan schools and gave them until July 17 to submit to explain why the permit to operate and recognition granted to the school be fully revoked.

The deadline was later extended to July 22 upon the request of Salugpungan Executive Director Eugenia Nolasco.

Governor Uy also underscored that the provincial government will exert its efforts to ensure that the indigenous peoples (IP) communities have access to quality education.

In a Bayanihan concept, two schools serving IP children opened last June 3 at sitios Side 4, Barangay Mangayon and Puting Bato, Barangay Ngan, all in Compostela town.

With a vision of keeping every child in school, the provincial government with the help of public and private stakeholders will construct another five schools in geographically isolated and depressed areas.

Aside from the governor, the province’s Indigenous Peoples Mandatory Representative to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Board Member Datu Felipe Masambo also disclosed that the Provincial Tribal Council has received reports that lessons in the Salugpungan schools include ideologies of the communist group.

The tribal chieftain also said that parents have expressed concerns that their children will be utilized to fight against government forces. 

“Ang gusto lamang sa mga ginikanan na pagkahuman ug eskwela, makatabang sa ilang panginabuhian; dili kay makig gira na hinuon,” he said. (What the parents wanted is after schooling, their children will help them in their livelihood; instead of them, going to war.)

Datu Masambo noted that the tribal council’s submitted a resolution to the Provincial Peace and Order Council in a meeting last January 25, 2019 for the closure of the Salugpungan schools. (PIA11, Michael L. Uy)

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