DAVAO DEL NORTE, Oct. 22 (PIA)---- The National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) in Davao Region has organized a quick response team which takes a convergence strategy to immediately address concerns and issues affecting the indigenous peoples (IPs).
NCIP Chief of Technical and Management Services Shirley Iguianon this afternoon revealed that NCIP XI had conceived the idea of setting up such convergence group in second quarter this year taking into account the need to give immediate response to IP rights violation in collaboration with other government agencies.
“We feel that there is a need for government agencies to come together to address violation of IP rights,” she said.
Led by lawyers, the quick response team also attends to concerns and rights of women and children particularly focusing those in the IP communities.
On top of violation of IP rights, the Quick Response Team also gives attention to basic services needed by IP communities.
“We understand that the mandate of serving IPs is not the sole responsibility of NCIP,” Iguianon said as she revealed that NCIP XI also works with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) 11 in the team.
Offhand, she said that members of the NCIP Quick Response Team are the Armed Forces of the Philippines, the DSWD 11 and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
She explained that the basis of the working mechanics of the team is the Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Act (IPRA) which upholds free prior informed consent (FPIC) and which puts consideration on customary laws.
Iquianon said the QRT of NCIP XI may not ultimately solve all issues and concerns affecting IP communities but she was optimistic that the team can provide the means of coming up with the solution.
NCIP already organized provincial teams in Compostela Valley and in Davao Oriental on October 13 and October 14 with the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) as a special member.