MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur (PIA)--Over the past years, Tugaya town in Lanao del Sur province has always progressed along with its celebrated brand as the renowned cradle that houses and fosters the colorful and rich culture of Maranaos. Such is being attested even by Maranos themselves who always looked up to the named municipality for the preservation of their own identity. Lawyer Maisara Dandamun-Latiph, a formerly known member of Parliament of the Bangsamoro Transition Authority and the current chief of the Marawi Compensation Board, emphasized that it is vital for Tugaya to be marked as a locality having the highest number of concentration of artisans which builds the reputation and legacy for their ethnic group. With this, she stated that it would also be imperative they would be centered on an initiative called cultural mapping. As explained, cultural mapping is an initiative that goes beyond the process of documenting and visualizing different sides of cultural resources, to include tangible and intangible elements, to form an image of a diverse community. In the case of Tugaya town, its local government unit (LGU) led this effort aided by the former office of Latiph and the Ministry of Trade, Investments and Tourism (MTIT). “Tugaya is the cradle of Maranao artisan culture…The very purpose of cultural mapping is to paint a visual augmented representation of the cultural landscape of Tugaya that can help artists, residents, communities and organizations in Tugaya,” said Latiph.
The same sentiment was also expressed by Bangsamoro Commission for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage (BCPCH) Executive Assistant Iman Lucman who believed that this notable undertaking would not only preserve heritage but would likewise cultivate a deeper understanding and appreciation of their cultural identity. Seeing this, he conveyed his office’s full support for the advancement of cultural mapping in Tugaya town. “Culture is the soul of a society. It binds people together. Tugaya is blessed with diverse customs, traditions and cultures. Thus, it is just right that the project started in Tugaya,” said Lucman.In their pursuit of preserving their culture, the LGU-Tugaya bared as well that they are gearing up to be recognized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization for their cultural heritage. (CRG/PIA-10/Lanao del Sur)