From 2010 to 2012, the Subanen communal ground was plagued by conflicts and violence between small scale and large-scale miners. This prompted the tribal leaders to unify their claims on the land through the creation of the Subanen Tribal Council (STC). Tribal council requested Bantay Kita to provide guidance and policy inputs to the tribal council and its engagement with large-scale mine TVI Resource Development Corporation. In response to this request, Bantay Kita conducted a 2-day workshop on governance mechanisms and transparency last May 13-14, 2015 in Bayog, Zamboanga Del Sur.
Forty-four participants from the STC and Bayog barangay council members in the town engaged in the discussion. The workshop discussed the Indigenous People’s Rights Act, the Extractive Industry Value Chain, the Subanen customary law, and the Philippine Mining Law Provisions on indigenous people’s royalties.
The workshop also aimed to assist the STC in drafting an IP Mining Royalty Transparency Policy to effectively monitor their mining royalties. Bantay Kita, a staunch advocate of transparency and accountability in the extractive industry, recommended experienced speakers from member organizations to lead the workshops.
Among them was Mr. Jose Melvin Lamanilao from Paglilingkod Batas Pangkapatiran Foundation who talked about the IPRA law and the Subanen customary law. Ms. Perpevina C. Tio from the Ateneo de Davao University – Mindanawon Initiatives for Cultural Dialogue discussed the important points of the memorandum of agreement signed by the STC with the TVI Resource Development Corporation. She presented an IP transparency framework to engage the tribal council in developing their own governance mechanisms concerning mining which is also aligned with their customary laws.
As a result of the training, the Subanen tribal leaders drafted an action plan that included conduct of tribal meetings and gukom assemblies to discuss the needed tribal resolutions and actions to ensure that they maximize the benefits of mining in their engagement with TVI Resource Development Corporation.