CITY OF TABUK, Kalinga, July 22 (PIA ) -- As the Cordillera region celebrated its 32nd foundation day on July 15, newly assumed local chief executives expressed their support in the pursuit of the elusive dream of a Cordillera autonomous region.
Apayao Gov. Eleanor Bulut-Begtang expressed full support and the continuing commitment of the province of Apayao to the common vision of an autonomous and developed region of the Cordillera.
"We take pride that through the ambits of our administrative region, we have slowly but surely laid down the necessary cornerstones that will sustain the march of this great region into autonomy in the future," said Begtang, former congresswoman of Apayao.
"May this celebration serve to rekindle the flames of the collective struggle for our region's autonomy, at the same time an avenue where we can strengthen linkages of unity and cooperation, through which we can hope to engage with each other in collaborative endeavors relative to the region's continuing quest for autonomy," she added.
For Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong, the celebration this year reflects the vibrant aspiration in achieving the ultimate goal in bringing CAR to greater heights and realizing the constitutional mandate of establishing a Cordillera autonomous region.
With the passion of our Cordillera lawmakers in pursuing the passing of the organic act for Cordillera coupled with the overwhelming support of the constituents, we will be able to have our own autonomous region, he said.
The officials and constituents of the province of Benguet continue to stand and support the dreams and clamor for a better Cordillera with the establishment of an autonomous region, Benguet Gov. Melchor Diclas assured.
Ifugao Gov. Jerry Dalipog said that the Cordillera autonomy should be realized the soonest to ensure that Cordillerans would be the ones managing and developing their region including its environment, natural resources and other potentials.
Kalinga Governor Ferdinand Tubban enjoined Cordillerans to pray together that the new congress will fast track the passage of organic act for Cordillera Autonomous Region before the Constitution is revised.
"We are one with our brothers and sister who have fought, who are fighting and will fight for regional autonomy towards a common goal in ensuring the best for our children and the coming generation," Mountain Province Gov. Bonifacio Lacwasan Jr. said.
"To my fellow Cordillerans, let me assure you that the province of Abra is with you all the way to reinforce our quest in building one greater Cordillera, one autonomous Cordillera," Vice Governor Ronald Balao-as said.
He stressed to his fellow Cordillerans that there is a need to unite and have one sound which he compared to the sound of the gong, a solid loud sound, which symbolizes the clamor of a united Cordillera for an autonomous region.
Balao-as also recognized the Cordillera Peoples Liberation Army, who because of their gallantry and contributions, the Cordillera Administrative Region was established as a prelude the creation of an autonomous region. He said the CPLA even set aside their armed struggle and give peace a chance and let autonomy take its course.
Most of the Cordillera LCEs are new in their positions except for Balao-as who was reelected, and Lacwasan who was acting governor for three years. (JDP/RMC- PIA CAR)