During a press conference called by the Sangguniang Tribung Ayta (STA) ng CADT 025-A here last Wednesday, Narciso was accused of racism by the Aetas particularly in dealing with them on the Joint Management Agreement (JMA) the indigenous people (IP) purportedly signed with the CDC.
Ruvielane S. Margarito, the IP representative in the Mabalacat City council, said Narciso treats them as “inferiors” even if the IPs are supposedly their partners in the JMA.
Margarito said that during a March 9 meeting where five members of the CDC board of directors were present along with representatives of the local government units of Mabalacat City and Bamban, Tarlac led by their respective mayors, Narciso told them they have no capacity to make a proper auditing of the monies in the JMA.
“Who is going to audit? Kayo (You)? Bakit registered leader ka ba (Are you a registered leader)? Marunong kang mag audit (Do you know how to audit)?” Margarito quoted Narciso as telling her.
“Dapat pu bang sabihin yan kung sinasabi nila na may joint venture kami? Dapat bang sabihin yan sa ka-joint venture mo (Do you really need to say that if they are saying that they are our partners in the joint venture. Do you say that to your joint venture partner)?” Margarito said.
“Hindi naman kami talaga marunong mag-audit e kaya nga mayroon tayong CPA mayroon tayong COA (We really don’t know how to conduct an audit that is we have CPAs and we have the COA),” Margarito averred.
“Doon po namin naramdaman na bakit pa kami makikipag-joint venture kung ganyan ang tingin nila sa amin (That’s when we felt why should we continue with our joint venture with them if they treat us that way),” Margarito said.
“Kasi po hindi na dapat i-remind sa kanila na bigyan n’yo kami ng kopya dapat kusang loob nilang binibigay kasi partner daw namin sila (Because they should not be reminded that they should furnish us documents since they should give these voluntarily because they are supposed to be our partners),” she added.
That is also the reason, she said, why the Aetas are demanding an accounting of the whole money including the 80 percent share of the CDC, aside from their 20 percent share in the JMA.
Margarito said as a city councilor of Mabalacat, Narciso should treat her properly and with respect.
“Siguro bilang isang city councilor karapatan ko na mag request (maybe as a city councilor, it is my right to make a request),” she said.
Margarito’s allegation of racism against Narciso has been referred to the CDC Communications Department for comment which has not been responded to as of press time.