The Cordillera Connection band serenading the people of Sagada with songs highlighting messages on self-determination and autonomy during the celebration of the 2018 Etag Festival.

POBLACION, SAGADA – Around 500 residents and guests witnessed the Concert-Forum on Cordillera Autonomy which coincided with the celebration of the Etag Festival last February 2, 2018.

Seen as a good opportunity to intensify the autonomy campaign through music, the Sagada LGU led by Mayor James Pooten, Jr. and Sagada Indigenous Peoples’ Mandatory Representative (IPMR) Mr. Jaime “Tigan-o” Dugao initiated the inclusion of the said concert-forum in the festival.

The Cordillera Connection (TCC) band performed a variety of songs with different genres such as folk, reggae, pop, rock, among others. The songs highlighted messages on self-determination and autonomy in addition to the brief messages shared by the emcees, Mr. Vladimir D. Cayabas and Ms. Jasmin T. Lapnawan. Some of the audience eagerly interacted and answered the queries of the emcees focusing on the basic concepts, history of regional autonomy, three core messages and the definition of the word “Cordilleran”.

Some of the audience also danced to the beat of the TCC band’s performance while local artists were also welcomed to perform and share their talents.

The biting cold was no match for the warm welcome and support shown by the Sagada LGU, residents, as well as those from neighboring municipalities. More importantly, the less than desirable weather did not dampen the spirit of the band, the artists and the audience who continued to indulge in a night of fun, entertainment and learning, all wrapped into one.

The TCC band also debuted another autonomy song entitled “United Cordillera” in addition to the existing original compositions on autonomy.

It can be recalled that the Regional Development Council (RDC-CAR) with the National Economic and Development Authority staged similar concert-forums in the provinces of Benguet, Kalinga, Mountain Province and Ifugao in 2017.

The RDC-CAR continues to come up with innovative and creative ways to boost the autonomy advocacy through different types of media. Keep abreast of more activities aside from the usual autonomy IEC fora which are lined-up this year. (Zenia P. Cadiogan, NEDA- SPCAR)