Filipino Tribal Leader Leads Prayer At Opening Rites of the UN Experts Mechanism on Rights of Indigenous Peoples

PIPLinks Press Release
Date of publication: 
11 August, 2009

PIPLinks Press Release on behalf of a consortium of Philippine-based organizations

Geneva, Switzerland—Timouy José “Boy” Anoy, a Subanon Tribal Leader, led the prayer in the opening rites of the Second Session of the United Nations Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (EMRIP) in Geneva, 10th August 2009.

The EMRIP was created by the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) to provide the Council with thematic expertise, and provide it with studies and research based advice. The EMRIP consists of five independent, indigenous experts. One of the current experts is a Filipino Igorot, Mr. José Mencio Molintas.

The second session of the EMRIP is meeting August 10-14, 2009 to discuss lessons learned and challenges to achieve the implementation of the right of indigenous peoples to education, as well as the implementation of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. There are over 400 indigenous delegates, and their supporters, registered from all over the world, who are participating together with the official representatives of governments.

To give the opening blessing to the meeting is an honour bestowed on leaders from different parts of the world. Timouy Jose Anoy said a Subanon prayer that all participants be blessed with wisdom and clarity in deliberating issues. He also prayed that all indigenous peoples from all over the world, who came a long way to the EMRIP get respect, recognition and redress for violations against their rights. Timouy Jose Anoy sprinkled water on the venue to symbolize clarity of thought and coolness of minds.

Timouy José “Boy” Anoy, together with another Subanon Leader Timouy Noval Lambo and Ifugao representative Peter Duyapat will participate in this five-day session to share their experience and propose ideas in addressing violation of rights to land, and rights to self determination by large scale mining companies and the lack of government support for redress.

The three leaders are also attending the 75th Session of the UN Committee on the Elimination of all forms of racial discrimination (UNCERD) to present a report about the discrimination of Indigenous Peoples in the Philippines to the committee as well as to press for a resolution to a Subanon Submission made at a previous meeting of the Committee.

For details/ inquiry please contact:
Lodel D. Magbanua, +63 917 887 01 09, lodel [at] piplinks [dot] org
Andrew Whitmore, +44 775 439 5597, comms [at] piplinks [dot] org