Datu Victor Danyan remained a firm leader of the indigenous peoples until his death on December 3, 2017 in the remote village of Datal Bonlangon, which nestled deep in the rugged Daguma Mountain Range. Amid the death threats, he never backed down and continued to oppose the encroachment of the coffee plantation into their ancestral domain.
Datu Victor and his people only wanted to protect their ancestral domain from any forms of development aggression.
These pictures were taken during my brief stint with Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center–Kasama sa Kalikasan⁄Friends of the Earth Philippines (LRC–KsK/FoE Phils) about 10 years ago.
A portion of the Dawang Coffee Plantation that encroached into the ancestral domain of the T’bolis in Sitio Datal Bonlangon.
Datu Victor Danyan with father Datu Lugata during the Ancestral Domain Sustainable Development and Protection Plan (ADSDPP) planning in Sitio Datal Bonlangon. His father was said to be in his late 80s when this photo taken in 2006.
Lumad women drying corn in Datal Bonlangon.
Fresh chayote leaves for meals.
Mother and son in Sitio Tawan Dagat
Lumads harvest gabi (taro) crops in Datal Bonlangon. During our fieldwork, lumads serve this ‘malagkit gabi’ during meals or merienda time.
(L-R) Brothers Victor Jr., Artemio, Sr. Alice Orihinal of OND-Hessed Foundation and an unidentifed lumad boy, whose name I could no longer remember. This was taken in 25 October 2006 while we’re on our way to Datal Bonlangon from a nearby sitio. The brothers were killed along with their father Datu Victor in what the military claims to be a ‘clash’ with NPA rebels.
A mother and child inside their house.
T’boli children fetch water from a lone natural spring source in Datal Bonlangon.
Datu Victor Danyan always had a smile on his face: a happy person.
A T’boli woman prepares a tobacco on a piece of paper.
A lumad’s house atop of a hill in Sitio Segowit.
Coal samples taken during an exploration drilling near Sitio Tawan Dagat.
Datu Victor’s youngest son Nathaniel with mother, Monang. Photo taken in 18 June 2008.
T’boli family in Datal Bonlangon.
What used to be a dense forest….