SAN JOSE, Antique – The indigenous people (IP) or the Ati community in Antique urged the Philippine Statistics Authority or the municipal registrar to conduct a mobile registration for their members with no birth certificates or marriage contracts.
Perlita Oyong, chairperson of the IP Association of Southern Antique and the Ati tribal leader in Barangay Tina, Hamtic town, said there are many Ati cultural minorities in Antique still unregistered due to lack of money aside from other reasons.
“Many Ati in southern Antique are still not registered with the local registrar,” Oyong said in local language.
Around 2,000 children belonging to the IP Association of Southern Antique, whose members are mostly from the southernmost towns of Anini-y to Sibalom, have no birth certificates yet. A good number of the 5,000-strong association has no marriage certificates.
“There are some Ati with no marriage certificates because of the documentary requirements they have to comply with, which they could not afford,” she said, adding that for instance, the certificate of no marriage (Cenomar) has to be secured prior a civil marriage.
“The Ati couple would rather save their money for their food than getting the Cenomar,” Oyong said.
She added the conduct of mobile registration with the support of the local government unit would be a big help.
Antique has around 18,000 IPs composed mainly of the Ati, the Iraynon-Bukidnon or the upland people, and the Cuyonin or minority group from Cuyo island, Palawan who resettled in the province.(With a report from PNA/PN)