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October 20, 2010

REINERIO ALBA

Elementary students are now learning about the country’s “Gawad ng Manlilikha ng Bayan” awardees as the information on them are now part of the textbooks on the subject “Civics and Culture.”

Published by Vibal Publishing House, the information on Mindoro’s “ambahan” poet Ginaw Bilog, for one, is now part of their Civics and Culture book series for Grade 3 students. The books include both the Filipino and English versions of the 4th edition of “Isang Bansa, Isang Lahi,” Makabayan series, “Kultura, Kasaysayan at Kabuhayan,” “Makabayang Pilipino” series, and “Masipag na Pilipino.” “The Masipag na Pilipino” is currently being used by all public schools in the country, and has been in circulation since 2006.

In April 1992, the Gawad sa Manlilikha ng Bayan or the National Living Treasures Award was institutionalized through Republic Act No. 7355. Tasked with the administration and implementation of the Award is the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), the country’s highest policy-making and coordinating body for culture and the arts. The NCCA , with support from all the concerned agencies, conducts the search for the gifted traditional artists in the country.

The Manlilikha ng Bayan awardees are required to be a part of an indigenous/traditional cultural community in the country that has preserved indigenous customs, beliefs, rituals and traditions and/or has syncretized whatever external elements that have influenced it. They must also have engaged in a folk art tradition that has been in existence and documented for at least fifty years, and must have consistently performed or produced works of superior and distinctive quality. It is required as well that this high level of technical and artistic excellence must have been passed on to and is widely practiced by the present generation in their respective communities.

First awarded in 1993, the awardees now number to eleven. The list includes the following people: Ginaw Bilog (Oriental Mindoro); Masino Intaray (Palawan); Samaon Sulaiman (Maguindanao); Lang Dulay (South Cotabato); Salinta Monon (Davao del Sur); Alonzo Saclag (Ifugao); Federico Caballero (Iloilo); Uwang Ahadas (Basilan); Darhata Sawabi (Sulu); Eduardo Mutuc (Pampanga); and Haja Amina Appi (Tawi-tawi).

Vibal has also released an interactive CD-ROM called Filipinism: Makabayan 3 as a supplement to these textbooks.

For more information on the “Gawad ng Manlilikha ng Bayan” award and its awardees, please go to this link:http://www.ncca.gov.ph/about-ncca/org-awards/org-awards-gamaba-guidelines.php