indigenous peoples

Allen Capuyan steps down as National Commission on Indigenous Peoples chief

Lance Spencer Yu

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Allen Capuyan steps down as National Commission on Indigenous Peoples chief

Allen Capuyan, cahirperson of the National Committee on Indigenous Peoples, at the senate public hearing on the irregularities of some irrigation projects, on August 2, 2023.

Angie de Silva/Rappler

Allen Capuyan, who was replaced by Jennifer 'Limpayen' Sibug-Las, is also no longer the Cabinet Officer for Regional Development and Security in Caraga

MANILA, Philippines – Controversial retired colonel Allen Capuyan – a Duterte appointee who red-tagged indigenous peoples and progressive groups – has stepped down from his position as chairperson of the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP).

In a Facebook post, Capuyan thanked President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. for “entrusting NCIP” to him until September 5.

Capuyan, who was appointed NCIP chief in June 2019 and served the Marcos administration until September 5, was replaced by Jennifer “Limpayen” Sibug-Las, previously the ethnographic commissioner for Central Mindanao.

Leaving his post as NCIP chairman meant that Capuyan was also no longer part of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) executive committee – a job that goes with being NCIP chief.

Capuyan said in a Facebook post that he was also no longer the Cabinet Officer for Regional Development and Security (CORDS) for Caraga, a designation he held in the last few months of the Duterte administration and since July, under the Marcos administration.

In a Facebook post on September 7, Capuyan said, “Now signing off as Chairperson, NCIP; as CORDS 13; Execom Member, NTF-ELCAC and SUCBEM Focal, NTF-ELCAC.” 

Capuyan’s many controversies

When he was the Duterte administration’s NTF-ELCAC executive director, alternative media networks sued him over his red-tagging claims.

Capuyan was a divisive but persistent figure under Rodrigo Duterte’s administration, which saw a proliferation of major civilian government posts going to retired armed forces personnel. In fact, his role as NCIP chairperson was his 4th appointment under Duterte. 

He first acted as Manila International Airport Authority assistant general manager for security and emergency services – a position he resigned from amid allegations of his involvement as the “Big Brother” in the P6.4-billion shabu smuggling incident. 

Capuyan also made veiled threats against Rappler and other alleged “communist” groups after Rappler ran a story about the issues surrounding his appointment as NCIP chairperson.

Prior to this, Capuyan was identified as the alleged “number one suspect” behind the wiretapping operations during the Arroyo administration, which eventually led to the “Hello Garci” controversy. (READ: From Hello Garci to ‘Big Brother’: Who is Allen Capuyan?) –

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Lance Spencer Yu

Lance Spencer Yu is a multimedia reporter who covers the transportation, tourism, infrastructure, finance, agriculture, and corporate sectors, as well as macroeconomic issues.