ANCESTRAL DOMAIN. Aeta leaders led by Indigenous People’s Organization Chair Roman King show the certificate of ancestral domain given to the tribespeople in Porac, Pampanga on Tuesday (May 31, 2022). The 18,660-hectare approved ancestral domain in Porac, also known as CADT 123, is inhabited by more than 12,000 Ayta Mag-indi and Ayta Mag-antsi IPs. (Photo courtesy of Porac LGU)

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga – The indigenous peoples (IPs) in Porac town have finally received their certificate of the ancestral domain (CADT) after 13 years of waiting.

The 18,660-hectare approved ancestral domain known as CADT 123, covers Barangays Camias, Diaz, Inararo, Villa Maria, and Sapang Uwak and is inhabited by more than 12,000 Ayta Mag-indi and Ayta Mag-antsi IPs.

Former President and congresswoman-elect Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, Vice Governor Lilia Pineda, Roland Calde, regional director of the National Commission on Indigenous People-Region 3, as well as local executives of Porac, led the historic awarding of the CADT in a simple ceremony in Barangay Villa Maria.

Calde said the issuance of a CADT to the IPs gives them ownership of the ancestral domain described as their private but community property which belongs to all generations of the concerned tribespeople.

“They shall develop, control, manage, and utilize collectively the ancestral domain with all the rights, privileges, and responsibilities subject to the condition that the said ancestral domain or portions thereof shall not be sold, disposed, or destroyed,” he said in a statement.

“Hindi na magpapalaboy-laboy o mapapalayas ang mga kapatid nating mga Ayta sa Porac dahil nakuha na nila ang kanilang CADT (Our brothers and sisters Aeta in Porac will no longer wander around and be evicted from their areas because they already received their CADT)," Governor Dennis Pineda said as he thanked those who helped fight for the rights of the IPs.

Porac Mayor Jaime Capil, meanwhile, said: “Ito ay isang makasaysayang tagumpay para sa ating mga kapatid na Aeta (This is a historic success for our brothers and sisters Aetas).”

On the other hand, Indigenous Peoples Mandatory Representative (IPMR) Edwin Abuque said “we are very thankful because we have waited so long for this.”

On July 23, 2009, the NCIP Commission En Banc approved the direct CADT application and since then, the IPs had waited for the CADT to be listed before the Registry of Deeds. (PNA)