Governance Issues and the NCIP
ALEJANDRO N. CIENCIA, JR.
The National Commission on Indigenous Peoples’ (NCIP) implementation of the Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Act (IPRA) has been the subject of a number of evaluative studies which, despite differences in focus, scope, and quality, have resulted in the general finding that the NCIP’s performance has been dismal. Still, it would be unfair to put all the blame on the NCIP for the poor implementation of the IPRA. This paper attempts a nuanced evaluation of the NCIP which takes into account the broader historical, institutional, social, and political contexts within which the NCIP pursues its mandate. The assessment entailed the examination of secondary data, mostly news reports about the NCIP, complemented by data obtained from other published sources. The study finds that the NCIP’s institutional behavior and performance have been greatly affected by a) presidential leadership and commitment to specific policy options; b) the nature of the agency’s relationship with other relevant governmental bodies; and c) the susceptibility or vulnerability of governmental bodies and decision-makers to external pressures from interest groups and other political actors.
Keywords: National Commission on Indigenous Peoples, Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Act, Indigenous Cultural Communities, Indigenous Cultural Communities, indigenous people, governance, Philippine mining
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