BANGUED, Abra: The Cordillera Regional Development Council (RDC) urged Malacañang to recognize the importance of the Mount Data Sipat agreement by declaring as holiday the date of its signing.
The agreement led to the peace accord between the Cordilleran warriors fighting for the rights of highlanders to their ancestral land and the government on September 13, 1986.
Andres Ngao-i, president of Cordillera Bodong Administration (CBA) raised the proposal for the region’s highest policy-making body to declare September 13 as a holiday in recognition of the historic event that took place over 30 years ago at Mount Data in Bauko, Mountain Province.
Baguio City mayor and RDC chairman Mauricio Domogan said he will endorse the proposal hoping it will get approved in time for next year’s commemoration of the Mount Data Sipat agreement.
It was former priest Conrado Balweg who led the CBA and the Cordillera People’s Liberation Army (CPLA) and initiated a non-violent, peaceful path that led to the Mount Data Sipat peace accord with the government which was a prelude to the establishment of a Bodong or peace agreement.
The CPLA is a breakaway group from the Communist Party of the Philippines–New People’s Army–National Democratic Front.
Ngao-i said the date is a historic event that led to the inclusion of the provision in the Constitution creating the Cordillera Autonomous Region (CAR) which also led to the issuance of Executive Order 220 on July 15, 1987 creating a temporary region composed of the provinces of Abra, Apayao, Baguio, Benguet, Ifugao, Mountain Province and recently the inclusion of Tabuk City, Kalinga comprising the Cordillera Administrative Region.