Baya regulation expected in Ifugao-A A +A
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
IFUGAO social work and development officer Joyce Niwane is seeking for a regulation on the drinking of “baya” or traditional rice wine by children in the highlands.
Niwane said most of the crimes committed by children in conflict with the law are rooted to vices, with drinking alcoholic beverages included in the list.
She said children as young as six years old have tasted the traditional rice wine of the province during special occasions, as it is considered a cultural practice.
“We are seeking its regulation, not a ban especially for children,” she said.
According to Niwane, Ifugao bubud is also served during celebrations. This, she said, is stronger than baya. “You cannot say they cannot drink this, they do not consider it as liquor.”
Niwane said children start to drink the traditional brews, and later on buy retail brands of liquor in stores.
She said the regulation of the traditional brew can help children stay away from drinking at an early age.
In the past, the making of these brews were done sparingly and only served during special occasions, but now, it is becoming more frequent with the boom in the tourism industry and the curiosity of visitors.
At present, there are no measures in the province regulating consumption of children of these traditional brews, owing to the culture and heritage of the province.
Niwane said banning baya drinking is not plausible for the province even for children, as the practice is deeply rooted to tradition, so a regulation is being sought, if only to save children from being introduced to alcoholism at an early age.
Niwane spoke before a panel and regional journalists during Thursday’s Northern Luzon Media Workshop on Child Rights sponsored by the Philippine Legislators Committee on Population and Development (PLCPD).
The PLCPD is advocating shunning corporal punishment for disciplining children. Positive discipline is being espoused by the organization.
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on October 02, 2012.