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MANILA, Philippines – President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. declared nine Manlilikha ng Bayan for 2023 through Proclamation No. 427 signed by the Office of the Executive Secretary last December 15.
Under the law, a “Manlilikha ng Bayan” is defined as “a citizen or a group of citizens engaged in any traditional art uniquely Filipino” and who would be considered as “master and maker of works of extraordinary technical quality.”
They are considered a link between the past where their folk art flourished and the present where their artistic skills must be sustained.
The nine recipients of the Gawad sa Manlilikha ng Bayan are as follows:
- Adelita Romualdo Bagcal, an Ilocano master of oral traditions from Banna, Ilocos Norte
- Abina Tawide Coguit, an Agusan Manobo embroiderer from La Paz, Agusan del Sur
- Sakinur-ain Mugong Delasas, a Sama master of traditional dance from Bongao, Tawi-Tawi
- Bundos Bansil Fara, a T’boli brasscaster from Lake Sebu, South Cotabato
- Marife Ravidas Ganahon, a Higaonon mat weaver from Malaybalay, Bukidnon
- Amparo Balansi Mabanag, a Ga’dang embroiderer from Paracelis, Mountain Province
- Samporonia Pagsac Madanlo, a Mandaya ikat weaver from Caraga, Davao Oriental
- Barbara Kibed Ofong, a T’boli ikat weaver from Lake Sebu, South Cotabato
- Rosie Godwino Sula, a T’boli chanter from Lake Sebu, South Cotabato
Bagcal was recognized for preservation and promotion of Dallot and other oral traditions in Ilocos Norte. Dallot is a chant usually performed in baptismal and wedding festivities.
Among the awardees is Ofong, a T’boli ikat weaver. T’boli indigenous people are known for their T’nalak, considered sacred cloth in Lake Sebu. The women who weave T’nalak are called dream weavers, as it is believed that the designs and patterns come to them in their dreams.
Ofong is a community master teacher at the Lake Sebu School of Living Traditions.
Meanwhile, Delasas was recognized in the field of dance for her promotion of Igal, the traditional dance of the Sama people. The ethnic dance is distinct for its fluid movements, the flicking of wrists and fingers, and the use of ornamental nails called sulakengkeng. It is performed in weddings and other festivities.
Delasas is considered a master Igal dancer.
Recipients of the Gawad sa Manlilikha ng Bayan or the National Living Treasure Award are conferred the responsibility to transfer their knowledge to their communities and the next generation.
Awardees are set to receive a commemorative plaque and/or medal, an initial grant of P100,000 followed by a monthly grant of P10,000 for life. – Rappler.com