TABUK CITY, Kalinga – Gov. James Edubba will be convening the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) next week to discuss the condition set by the Betwagan Tribe in Sadanga, Mountain province before entering into the exchange of peace tokens or the so-called ‘sipat’ with the Butbut Tribe of Tinglayan town to put an end to the several decades of tribal conflict.
Edubba, who went out of his way to attend a wedding in Betwagan to also dialogue with the tribal leaders to discuss issues and concerns confronting the settlement of the tribal conflict, said he was provided with pertinent materials in relation to the various issues related to the conflict and its possible solution thus it is important for the PPOC members to discuss these before being presented to the members of the Butbut Tribe for their inputs into a counterproposal to the Betwagan Tribe.
He added it is important to subject the condition set by the Betwagan tribe to consultations with concerned stakeholders to elicit their inputs to enhance the ongoing efforts to look for a ‘win-win’ solution to the long-standing conflict between the two tribes in conflict.
He expressed his gratitude to Mountain Province Gov. Bonifacio C. Lacwasan, Jr. for immediately initiating talks with the elders of the Betwagan Tribe to get their proposals on the possibility of re-opening the negotiations with their counterparts from the Butbut Tribe for the achievement of lasting peace in their respective communities.
Earlier, Lacwasan brought to the attention of Edubba the desire of the Betwagan Tribe for the members of the Butbut Tribe to pull out all the animals they dispersed in the disputed area before they will accept the proposed exchange of peace tokens between them to restart the negotiations towards the settlement of the long standing dispute in the area.
On his part, Edubba underscored the need to end the decades-old conflict between the Betwagan and Butbut Tribes so that women, children and the elderly will not always fear of their safety when going out to work in their fields because at present, they always scamper for safety when there are skirmishes between armed members of the feuding tribes.
He claimed his administration is willing to wait for a reasonable time to allow the elders of both tribes to decide to put an end to the conflict so that their members can peacefully pursue their economic activities even in the imputed area without fear of being harassed or intimidated.
He stipulated that it is his initiative to reopen the failed negotiations between the 2 feuding tribes through prevailing customary laws and practices vis-à-vis the legitimate processes whichever, will come first, so that lasting peace can be achieved to preserve human security of all in both villages.
During the kick off program of the 35th founding anniversary of the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) in Sagada, Mountain Province last July 1, 2022, Lacwasan and Edubba agreed to work together for the settlement of the ongoing tribal conflict between the Betwagan Tribe of Sadanga and the Butbut Tribe of Tinglayan for the realization of lasting peace in the said communities.