On 07 August 2023, the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) hosted official visit of Canadian Embassy in NCIP Central Office, Quezon City.
The purpose of the visit is to discuss status of Indigenous Cultural Communities/Indigenous Peoples (ICCs/IPs) in the Philippines and explore possible partnerships for future collaborative programs.
Representing the NCIP were Chairperson Allen A. Capuyan, Ethnographic Commissioner Jennifer Sibug-Las, Executive Director Mervyn H. Espadero, Bureau Directors, and Division Chiefs; while representing Embassy of Canada to the Philippines were Councilor for Political and Public Affairs Mr. Colin Francis Townson and Second Secretary (Political) Mr. Peter Wright.
The Chairperson welcomed the delegation and was appreciative of the opportunity to present the situations of ICCs/IPs on the ground and the different Programs, Activities, and Projects (PAPs) the NCIP is implementing. He underscored the importance of operationalizing the Eleven (11) Building Blocks framework geared to empower and create a self-governed ICC.
Potential areas for future collaboration like the Development Cooperation Initiatives, Truth and Reconciliation Framework were discussed by the Canadian Embassy Delegates.
During the discussion, Mr. Townson shared experiences of Canadian Government the importance of acknowledging short falls of governments with regard to ICCs/IPs so as to reconciliation among Indigenous Peoples.
The Canadian delegation, looks forward to establish Philippine-Canada Partnership as a part of their Indo-Pacific strategy – a poverty reduction program which may be tapped for the well-being of ICCs/IPs.
The Chairperson appreciated Truth and Reconciliation Framework and asked permission if such may be adopted as model for the nation-building initiative of the Commission.
To cap the meeting, the Chairperson provides Project Epanaw Coffee Table Books (CTB), 2022 Annual Accomplishment Report, and poster of 11 Building Blocks framework to the Canadian delegation.