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Cotabato’s Kalivungan Festival celebrates tri-people unity

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THE UKULELE Ensemble from Kabacan town perform during the opening of Cotabato’s 2018 Kalivungan Festival on Aug. 26. — LEAN S. DAVAL, JR.

COTABATO PROVINCE, formerly and still referred to as North Cotabato, is holding this week the main events for the Kalivungan Festival, a celebration of its tri-people composed of Christians, indigenous peoples, and Muslims. “The Kalivungan Festival this year is more meaningful because of the different activities that have been implemented. Every year the technical group of the festival work hard to engage all the people,” Jimmy Sta. Cruz, provincial information officer, said in an interview during Sunday’s opening ceremony. The activities are spread around the different towns and the capital city of Kidapawan. Governor Emmylou T. Mendoza, in her opening speech, said the Kalivungan is a time for celebrating and sharing meals together, and not for politics. Ms. Mendoza cited the province’s success to the commitment and unity of everyone, especially on challenges in peace and security. Cotabato, which is also celebrating its 104th founding anniversary on Sept. 1, ranked 4th most competitive province in the 2017 National Competitiveness Council index. — Maya M. Padillo

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