Vice Mayor Bernard Al-ag has questioned the National Commission on Indigenous People (NCIP)’s untimely objection over the qualifications of the selected Indigenous Peoples’ Mandatory Representative (IPMR) of Davao City.
Al-ag said that IPMR Cherry Ann Ortiz-Codilla underwent three validations already and was selected by the tribe through their customary law.
“Delaying the assumption of office of Ms. Codilla is detrimental to the welfare of the indigenous people as the IP sector needs a representation in the Sangguniang Panlungsod,” Al-ag added.
The vice mayor yesterday has also submitted a letter, addressed to the NCIP regional director Geroncio Aguio, urging him to release the certificate of affirmation of Codilla as soon as possible.
According to Al-ag, he tried to contact Aguio several times but was told that the official was “out.”
On May 11, Al-ag received a letter from the NCIP stating that they are revalidating the qualifications of Codilla as she does not have at least 25% Bagobo-Klata blood as required by law, along with a fluency and faculty of the their dialect.
However, Al-ag said that the claims of the NCIP are not reliable as Codilla was already validated for three times by their office.
“I think the purpose of this letter is to delay the issuance of the Certificate of Affirmation (COA) of our new IPMR,” he added.
Al-ag also believes that there is someone responsible for this delay.
“I think somebody must have been hurt during the selection process because their candidate did not win,” the vice mayor added.
Codilla was supposed to take oath last April 27 as the newest member of the City Council.
Meanwhile, Codilla has thanked Al-ag and Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio for their support.
In previous report, Codilla clarified that she has Bagobo-Klata blood because her grandfather was pure Bagobo-Klata, while their elders only allowed basic knowledge of their dialect.