By JULMUNIR I. JANNARAL
CAPITOL HILL, Marawi City: The Bangsamoro Commission for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage (BCPCH) and the Ministry of Trade, Investment, and Tourism (MTIT) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Thursday, March 17 to advance cultural tourism in Lanao del Sur.
The MOU signing, which took place at the Capitol Hill Conference Room in Marawi City, marked the commencement of the project entitled “Collection and Verification of Data on Cultural and Historical Assets as basis for the development of Cultural Tourism in Lanao del Sur.”
“This project will not just open tourism opportunities in the province but also to further educate the youth generation on the cultural and historical assets of Lanao del Sur coming from the natives themselves,” said MTIT Provincial Director Mohammad Mamainte.
Mamainte perceived that one of the challenges of this generation is that the youth do not seem to have interest about history and the stories of their natives, only believing what they hear and see in social media.
“We have to correct and supplement the incomplete current data that we have since there are wrong and inadequate perceptions about our history and culture,” said Mamainte.
Agreeing to the importance of the project, BCPH Commissioner for Lanao del Sur Robert Alonto shared that “in this context, it behooves us then to preserve and promote our cultural heritage using all the communication, educational, and technological platforms available to us.”
He emphasized that this initiative will cultivate mass awareness of Moro nationhood that will further strengthen legitimate assertion of Bangsamoro identity.
“It should always be borne in mind that at this parliamentary stage of our struggle for the right to self-determination, assertion of Bangsamoro identity is at the heart of it. Importantly, note too, that our unique identity is shaped by our history, faith, and cultural heritage all rolled into one,” Commissioner Alonto explained.
Based on the project rationale, this joint venture will utilize the crucial convergence between tourism and cultural heritage since it shall best optimize cultural tourism as an opportunity to provide immense direct and indirect benefits to the people within Lanao del Sur and shall also best characterize the richness of M’ranaw culture and ancestral domain within the context of their being one of the thirteen ethnolinguistic peoples of the Bangsamoro.
“Cultural tourism bolstered by history not only attracts outside tourists but also provides educational information to our people and visitors alike on the richness of our history, tradition, and cultural heritage,” Alonto said.
The project was formulated by the office of MTIT Director General Rosslaini Alonto-Sinarimbo, approved by Minister Abuamri Taddik for the implementation of the provincial units of the MTIT and the BCPCH in Lanao del Sur. (JIJ)