Ata Manobo to defend title

MAKE way for Davao City's rich life and culture as the 2nd Davao Indigenous Tribal Games dubbed "Lumadnong Dula" kicks off at 8 a.m. today at People's Park with the Ata Manobo Tribe set to defend its overall championship.

But 2014 runners-up Matigsalog Tribe and Tagabawa Tribe are out to give the Atas a run for their money.

Matigsalog Datu Rudy Mande, in last Thursday's Davao Sportswriters Association (DSA) Forum, said: "Sigurado pildihon namo sila ug ilogon namo ang first prize. Gusto jud mi kami mag-champion karong tuiga (We will beat them and snatch the first prize. We really want to become this year's champion)."

Tagabawa Datu Jonathan Awing, for his part, said, "Amo na ning gipangandaman. Ikatulo rami last year pero karon among ginatarget and kampeonato (We really prepared for this. We are just third last year but we are eyeing the championship this time)."

Awing, however, was quick to add that the competition is more for fun and a way for the tribes to fellowship.

"The games is a way for us to meet together and for Davao's people to know about us," Awing added in the vernacular.

Mande also said in the vernacular: "It's like a reunion for us. There will be rituals in the opening ceremonies where our fellow lumads will showcase the life and culture of our tribes."

Events entered are pana, sasalid, sisibow, dagan, sosakoro/ panikado, bibinayo, totaringki/paning, solopot, siklot, bubuntug, aakow/karang relay, bobadsog/babadsang, dayanghoy, baklid and tug of war.

Obu Manovu and Klata Manobo will also field a delegation to the games.

Expected guests during the opening rites are Department of Tourism (DOT) Assistant Secretary Arturo Boncato Jr. and City Administrator Atty. Jesus Melchor V. Quitain.

Sports Development Division of the City Mayor's Office (SDD-CMO) officer-in-charge William "Butch" Ramirez will declare the opening of the games while Councilor Halila Y. Sudagar, the IP representative to the City Council, will award the cash prizes and medals to the winners later in the afternoon.

The games stakes cash prizes of P55,000, P45,000 and P35,000 to the top three tribes while the next two placers will each go home with P20,000.

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