THE Baguio City Council has passed on first reading an ordinance pushing to declare Happy Hallow village in the Camp John Hay reservation a heritage site in order to preserve the Ibaloy domain.
Happy Hallow, a village populated by Ibaloy and Kankana-ey residents, will be endorsed to the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) to be included in its list of National Historical, Heritage and Ecological Sites, according to the proposed ordinance sponsored by Councilor Isabelo Cosalan.
The move is intended to protect the Ibaloy domain, as the 2006 Certificate of Ancestral Domain Title (CADT) for Happy Hallow is being contested by the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA), which runs and oversees Camp John Hay.
“Historical preservation involves much more than simply saving and restoring old buildings and sites of historic importance,” the draft law says,
Despite the contestation, the local government incorporated into Baguio’s cultural map the history, traditions and artifacts of Happy Hallow, defining them as its “tangible” and “intangible” cultural assets, which the city council approved in February before “Book 1” of the Baguio Cultural Mapping Report was transmitted to the Philippine Registry of Cultural Property.
The council also in 2009 adopted Happy Hallow’s Ancestral Domain Sustainable Development and Protection Plan (ADSDPP), which would guide the development of the ancestral domain and which was written up by the local indigenous communities in Happy Hallow.