Bacolod City

Fowl play: Bacolod’s chicken inasal celebrated, then uncelebrated

Erwin Delilan

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Fowl play: Bacolod’s chicken inasal celebrated, then uncelebrated

Chicken Inasal.

Elmer B. Domingo via Wikimedia Commons

Bacolod tourism chief Ma. Teresa Manalili makes a fowl faux pas, prematurely crowing about the city's chicken inasal’s cultural status. Days later, she’s left to eat crow and apologize for the mix-up.

BACOLOD, Philippines – In a classic case of putting the cart before the horse – or in this case, the chicken before the inasal – Bacolod City officials scrambled on Tuesday, May 28, to retract an announcement about their beloved chicken inasal (grilled chicken) being recognized as the city’s cultural property.

The fowl faux pas was initially made by Bacolod City tourism chief Ma. Teresa Manalili on Friday, May 24. Manalili apologized for the premature proclamation, admitting she’d misinterpreted an email from the National Commission on Culture and Arts (NCCA). 

The NCCA clarified that it has not yet bestowed such an honor on Bacolod’s chicken inasal.

Caught up in the heat of the moment, Manalili publicly declared the news during the opening program for the 4th Chicken Inasal Festival held at North Capitol Road in Bacolod.

City officials, the Department of Tourism Regional Director Crisanta Marlene Rodriguez, guests, and reporters were all in attendance to witness the announcement.

“And the certification will follow,” Manalili told the crowd.

Upon hearing this, Bacolod Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez said, “Officially, chicken inasal is ours.”

Bacolod Councilor Em Ang, who authored a city ordinance declaring chicken inasal as the city’s cultural property, compared Manalili’s May 24 announcement to the city holding a Guinness World Record.

Realizing her mistake, Manalili said she later realized that the NCCA’s message was meant to congratulate the local government for receiving a certificate of compliance for the city’s local cultural inventory, which was submitted to the NCCA on December 15, 2023, in accordance with the Cultural Heritage Act of 2009.

According to Manalili, the NCCA had merely congratulated the city government for receiving the certificate, not for recognizing Bacolod’s chicken inasal as a cultural property. –

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NCCA recognizes chicken inasal as ‘cultural property’ of Bacolod

NCCA recognizes chicken inasal as ‘cultural property’ of Bacolod

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