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Just this morning, “mediamen” woke me up to the usual condemnation of sellout politicians to one exploitative foreign capitalist mining company. Apparently, the mayor didn’t have the right to voice out against subversive priests in the Church – how dare she attack the prelate!. They were wasting their breath, since the town mayor doesn’t automatically receive bribe money from the firm. Which means no omerta payola from the multi-billion dollar project. Then again in terms of fighting and dying in this side of the mountains, it’s nothing remarkable.

The usual suspects

Recently, the place became famous for grinding SMI-XSTRATA’s local operations. Courtesy of a Red Pangayaw, the copper-gold mining project stopped their entire operations as two people were killed.

50 years ago, this part of the world was still home to headhunting tribes of the B’laan. In keeping with the indigenous culture, many upheld their warlike tendency even to this day. In order to win a hostile audience, SMI continued to pump in money to win local support from said headhunting tribes. Admittedly, their pacification campaign through cold hard cash reduced the number of people killing themselves in this highland of Mindanao. But as cultural, ideological and economic trysts get in the way of smooth transitions, the situation will get worse before it gets better.


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