10 29 DENR XI CMU NCIP XI and IPs collaborate for Mt. Apo Natural Parks UNESCO UGGP 1On October 24, 2022, the Academic Paradise of the South and one of country’s top research academic institutions- the Central Mindanao University-Bukidnon hosted the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) and inked it with the DENR-XI, NCIP-XI and Unified Bagobo Tagabawa Tribe of the Mt. Apo Natural Park (MANP).

The said MOA with the DENR XI, Indigenous Cultural Communities (ICCs) and the Protected Area Management Board (PAMB) strengthens and prioritizes the research thrust of the said University to focus on the MANP being one of the country’s protected areas.

Results of the institution’s studies will be utilized by the PAMB and the Protected Area Management Office of MANP to employ improvement on the governance and operations within the park. It also aims to wield supporting information in its bid for the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Global Geoparks (UGGP) inscription.

The DENR XI and the PAMB team were also treated to a tour of the CMU campus and its facilities such as the extensive laboratories, natural history museum which is home to thousands of representative faunal taxa, a one of kind and unique Fernery where rare, unique, threatened and edible Pteridophytes (ferns) can be spotted.

The team also had a jaunt in Mt. Kitangland Range and Natural Park (MKRNP) PAMO through the PENR Office of Bukidnon. Its PENR Officer Vergillo P. Alima and the PASU Merlinda Luna-Tabomo of MKWRNP shared their best practices and benchmarks for successful Protected Area Management.

No less than the University President Dr. Derije stated that the purposive partnerships for harmonization of the ICCs, NCIP and DENR in the Protected Area Management Board of Mt. Apo Natural Park is worth emulating in other Protected Areas.

DENR XI RED Bagani Fidel A. Evasco, on the other hand, stressed that said partnership plays a key role as MANP’s aspires for UNESCO Global Geopark inscription.

The said fusion of expertise was attended by no less that the University President Dr. Jesus Antonio Derije and Dr. Victor Amoroso Head of the (Center for Biodiversity Research and Extension) CEBREM, with the DENR RXI Regional Executive Director Bagani Fidel A. Evasco, ARD for Technical Services Victor T. Billones, PENR Officer Alberto N. Bandiola, OIC-PASU Archelito L. Mallari and the Unified Bagobo Tagabawa-Kapiid Kabanwa Officer Inc. Baby Gerlina Uwok, NCIP XI Representatives, PAMB Member Tourism Officer Julius R. Paner and CMU and DENR Officers attending.

(With details from Franklyn R. Buenaflor Deputy PASU MANP and PENRO Davao del Sur & CENRO Digos Information Officer & Cylle S.Nadonza)