INTRODUCTION (Municipal Profile)

The municipality of Sagada is classified as a fifth-class municipality in Mountain Province under the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR). It was in 1847 that the place was established as a political unit, but it was only on the 25th of June 1963 that the Municipality of Sagada came into existence under Executive Order Number 42.

The Spaniards first came in contact with the people of Sagada during the period of 1625-1700s. The expedition in the area was driven by the search for precious metals such as gold and copper to name a few. It was only during the 1830s when the name “Sagada” came about. It came from a group of Spanish soldiers who came from Besao. They met a man who was carrying a rattan basket for catching fish near Danum Lake. The soldiers asked the man what the name of the municipality was. Thinking that they were asking what he was carrying, he replied, “Sagada”. From then on, the settlement founded by Biag went down on Spanish record as Sagada (Cordillera Almanac, 1999).

The people of Sagada belong to the Northern Kankana-ey ethnolinguistic group, but they commonly identify themselves as Igorots, which means “people of the mountains”. Igorot people are known to be industrious and famous for their work in reference to construction of rice terraces, irrigation canals, vegetable production, cloth weaving, and their use of iron implements. With reference to the Bontocs occupying the eastern part of Mountain Province, the iSagada, together with the other Northern kankana-ey communities on the western section of the Mt. Province, are classified as Applai by the Office of the Northern Cultural Communities (ONCC).

 

PHYSICAL ENVIRONMENT

  1. Geographical Location

The Municipality of Sagada, Mountain Province is located in the northwestern portion of Mountain Province at 17° 05’ N and 120° 54’ E. It is politically bounded on the North by the Municipality of Tubo, Abra on the East by the Municipality of Bontoc, on the South by the Municipality of Sabangan, and on the West by the Municipalities of Bauko and Besao.

 

It is accessible by road either through the Halsema Highway (also called the Mountain Trail) from Baguio City or the National Highway passing through Banawe, Ifugao. It is approximately 157 kilometers from Bontoc.

 

  1. Barangay Subdivision

 

Sagada has a total land area of 9,969 hectares (MPDO, 2007) which is higher than the mapped domain area of 8,698 hectares in 1997 (ADMP, 2004).

 

The biggest barangay is Aguid which covers almost 2,717.68 hectares or 27% of the total land area. It covers the Amsulong watershed of the municipality. Barangay Pide, on the other hand, is the smallest barangay in Sagada which only covers 87.93 hectares or 0.88% of the whole municipality.

 

The land area is distributed to the following land uses:

 

LAND USE

AREA (in hectare)

%

Built-up Areas

530.26

5.32

Tourism

50

0.5

Alienable & Disposable

202.84

2.03

Protection Forest

4,506.06

45.20

Non-Nipas

3,200.86

32.11

Severe Erosion

1,458.43

14.63

River

20.55

0.21

OTAL

9,969

100

 

POPULATION, HOUSEHOLD AND FAMILY NUMBER PER BARANGAY

CY2016

The town has a total population of 12,164 distributed in 3,035 families (2,728 households) to give an average household size of 4.  The population has not been significantly increasing for the past ten years despite an annual live birth of at least 200.

Actual Population By Barangays, Sex, Households and Families

 

Barangay

Population

Household Number

Number of Families

Male

Female

Total

Aguid

355

316

671

160

172

Ambasing

402

397

799

217

223

Ankileng

484

494

978

205

238

Antadao

179

163

342

82

84

Balugan

481

431

912

173

210

Bangaan

521

457

978

197

221

Dagdag

426

430

856

185

219

Demang

368

386

754

179

204

Fidelisan

222

231

453

103

112

Kilong

235

215

450

96

102

Madongo

307

299

606

132

155

Nacagang

132

115

247

52

61

Patay

672

735

1,407

403

490

Pide

243

212

455

116

124

Suyo

237

223

460

104

116

Taccong

177

166

343

79

98

Tanulong

220

198

418

89

97

Tetepan Norte

198

184

382

91

135

Tetepan Sur

244

216

460

94

109

TOTALS

6103

5868

11,971

2757

3170

 

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

  1. Topography

Sagada, like the other municipalities situated in CAR, has a mountainous terrain. It has a gentle to very steep slopes with many portions of gradually sloping valleys in the west-central and northeastern areas. Elevation ranges from 910 meters above sea level on Mount Kaman-engel.

  1. Soil

Sagada, Mountain Province has 5 soil type classification that are prominent in the area, namely: (1) Undifferentiated Mountain Soil, (2) Sagada Clay Loam, (3) Sabangan Clay Loam, (4) Natonin Loam, and (5) Rough Mountain Loam (Municipal Agriculture Office (MAO), 2005).

  1. Slope Stability

Ground subsidence and unstable ground hazards were identified in some portions of Barangays Ankileng and Poblacion particularly in settlement areas. The municipality is also prone to other geologic hazards because of the presence of a fault line on its southeastern side, which traverses from Apayao to Otucan, Bauko.

  1. Climate

Sagada has a Type I climate based on the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) Coronas Climate Classification System. Type I climates have two pronounced seasons: wet and dry. The dry season is from November to April while the wet season is from May to October.

Sagada generally experiences a cool climate because of its relative high elevation. The cold weather is experienced from December until February, which are the coldest months. The Northern Area of the municipality has a relatively colder climate because it has the highest elevation in the area.

  1. Geology

Sagada is distinct for its limestone formations and underground rivers. The dominant types of minerals found in Sagada are sand, gravel and boulder aggregate, gold, calcium and limestone. (MAO, 2005)

NATURAL AND CULTURAL RESOURCES

  1. Water

Water is a basic resource for Sagada. It is used for domestic consumption in the households and for economic activities such as rice and vegetable production, livestock grazing, and also for the local tourism industry. Water sources or springs for domestic and irrigation supplies are spread out in Sagada.

Springs, creeks, and rivers are being tapped for household use and irrigation purposes. The rivers do not only provide and convey water for irrigation but they are also sources of edible freshwater products like eel, mudfish, and crabs. Rivers are also sources of aggregates for local infrastructure projects. In addition, river stones are used in the rehabilitation and maintenance of stonewalls in the municipality.

Sagada is a tributary of the Chico River. There are two major river systems in Sagada: (1) a major river system which starts from the northern area of the municipality and runs through the Bomod-ok Falls and passes through the eastern area. The Mabileng Irrigation, the largest irrigation system in Northern Sagada is sourced from Bomod-ok and irrigates the payeos in Aguid, Pide, Fidelisan and Tanulong; (2) a major river system which starts from Bangaan then traverses the westcentral barangays through the southern area and eventually connects to the Chico River at the junction in Malitep. It is the main source for irrigation and domestic water supply for the west-central and southern barangays. Both rivers drain into the Chico River. (Ancestral Domain Management Plan (ADMP), 2004).

Along the municipality’s tributaries, there are also spectacular waterfalls such as Bokong falls, Bomod-ok falls, Bomayeng twin falls, Mabileng falls, and Pongas falls. The municipality is also home to remarkable caves namely: Natividad cave, Latipan cave, Crystal cave, Billiing cave, Balangagan cave, and the Sumaging Cave, which is the largest.

  1. Forest Resources

Sagada’s forestland is rich with resources: these include the wood lots, herbal medicines, mushrooms, wild fruits, and the mountain tea. The forests in Sagada are classified into three types: (1) Mossy Forest, (2) Pine Forest, and (3) Other Wooded Forest. The mossy forest has a mixed vegetation of various tree and plant species, that mostly grow in high elevation areas. On the other hand, the pine forests are dominated by the Benguet pine species.

Unlike the kallasan that are naturally growing, many of the pine forests near the settlement areas today are the result of the sacrifice and deliberate effort of the ancestors of the people to plant and propagate the pine on mountain slopes near their villages in the early 1900s. The effort of their ancestors to plant pine trees in their surroundings has produced the present timber for housing and fuel needs. (FLUP, 2014)

  1. Mineral Resources

Part of Sagada’s forestlands are also rich in gold, such that one of the livelihoods of the people on the northern areas is mining. Aside from gold, numerous resources can be found in the municipality including pyrite, copper, stalagmites, stalactites, and limestone. Dominant mineral types in the municipality also include sand, gravel and boulder aggregate, and calcium.

  1. Cultural Resources

Most of the lands in Sagada are declared as ancestral domain, which are covered by the Certificate of Ancestral Domain Claims (CADCs). Some of the cultural resources the municipality takes pride on include rock and limestone formations. The cultural assets also include sacred areas which cover their spiritual and burial grounds. Sagada is known for its burial caves and hanging coffins, Patpatayan and Babawiyan.

WASTE MANAGEMENT

  1. Solid Waste Management

The management of Solid Waste in the municipality is a challenge that the Local Government Unit is meeting straight out.  As a tourist destination, Sagada generates more waste during the visiting season than during the rainy months, when inbound tourists are few.

To assist the Municipal Local Government Unit implement its programs and activities, solid Waste Management at the barangay level is being monitored.  On the implementation of the compost pits or Eco Composting Receptacls (ECR) at the household level, there are at least 1, 062 households with compost pits and one barangay has 4 compost pits being used by the households. There are at least 1, 360 households in the municipality that practices waste segregation.

Aside from LGU initiated clean up drives, where in pathways, roadsides, canals among others, which are participated in by the 19 barangays and the different organizations in the community, tourist destinations clean ups are being done by the following guides groups: Sagada Environmental Guides Association (SEGA), Sagada Genuine Guides Association (SAGGAs), Sagada Ethnos Tourist Guides Organization (SETGO) and the Bangaan Fedilisan Tanulong Aguid Madongo Pide Guides Association (BFTAMPGA).

An Executive Order mandating the reorganization of the Municipal Solid Waste Management Board, which is now called the Municipal Solid Waste Management and Environment and Natural Resources Board, was released in August. The Board now consists of the following:

 

      James B. Pooten, Jr.                  Municipal Mayor           Chairman

      Benjamin G. Capuyan                   Municipal Vice Mayor      Co-chair

      David B. Buyagan                      SB Chair on Health        Member

      Fermin s. Lumbaya                     ABC Representative        Member

      Jed S. Angway                         SWAII Representative      Member

      Marina Page-et                        Recycling Industry Rep    Member

      Nestor A. Morareng                    District Supervisor       Member

      Cheryl April C. Castro                SWM Focal Person          Member

      All High School Principals                                      Member

 

Board meetings were conducted for updates on solid waste management activities and for recommendations on other activities that can be done to improve waste management in the municipality.

 

The information and education campaign component of the SWM programs is a continuous activity that is being done by the LGU, MSWM Board, the different organizations in the community and other concerned individuals.  Part of the IEC is the inclusion of anti-littering and waste management reminders in the leaflets being handed out to tourists upon registration at the Tourist Information Center.  Furthermore, reminders regarding waste segregation and construction of compost pits/ECRs are included during regular barangay assemblies.

 

Some of the milestones achieved in 2016 were the conduct of the Waste Analysis and Characterization Survey in September 2016, organization of the Sagada Eco Police in October 2016 and the final closure of the open dumpsite at the Mission Compound last November 4, 2016.

  1. Water Disposal

Apart from the emerging problem of the municipality with regards to solid waste management, wastewater management is also becoming one of the apparent concerns. Due to the lack of septic tanks in some houses and other wastewater treatment facilities, deterioration in the condition of the surface and groundwater reserves, which are the main sources of potable water in the municipality, are affected and at stake.

  1. Hospital Waste

Hospital waste generated by the Municipal Health Office and St. Theodore’s Hospital are currently being disposed through stockpiling in a storage tank found in their vicinities. However, there is still no concrete plan as to where these used needles, bandages and other hospital waste will be disposed once filled up.

DEMOGRAPHY AND SOCIAL PROFILE

  1. Social Composition and Characteristics
  2. Mother Tongue/Ethnicity

The people of Sagada, collectively called “iSagada”. Belongs to the Kankana-ey ethnolinguistic group, further classified as Applai, a group located on the western side of the province. Kankana-ey is widely spoken but with distinct variations in the different ilis in terms of diction, intonation, and accent. It is notable that most locals express themselves better in English than in Filipino.

  1. Religious Affiliation

Unlike most Philippine towns, Sagada’s populace is predominantly Anglican. Other dominant religious affiliations include the Roman Catholic, Free Believers in Christ Fellowship Inc., Jehovah’s witnesses, Evangelical Protestant, Iglesia ni Cristo, Growing in Grace, Pentecostal Churches, Sapilada, and Baptist.

  1. Historical and Cultural Heritage

Sagada is known for its rice terraces, the “hanging coffins”, the Sagada Mission Compound and the dap-ay. The stretches of rice terraces are traditionally farmed for substinces. The “hanging coffins” suspended on sheer cliffs is a type of burial reserved for the most distinguished or honourable leaders in the community particularly the most prominent figure in the dap-ay. The Sagada Mission Compound which is the living legacy of the Episcopal Mission Church is often visited for its historic value. The contributions of the Sagada Mission range from education, health, economic development, and social work. The St. Mary’s school continues to provide educational services through the financial and moral support of its alumni. The St. Theodore’s Hospital, which started as a dispensary, has become the primary medical center in Sagada in tandem with the government’s Rural Health Unit (RHU). The former St. Joseph’s Orphanage has been turned into lodging house for visitors. The Sagada Episcopal Church which trained many of the earliest Episcopalian bishops in the Philippines in its seminary still has the highest number of members in Sagada. As for livelihood, the Sagada Mission also taught the iSagada the arts of weaving, sewing and exporting many textile products to other Missions abroad.

In contrast to the western-influenced church, the dap-ay stands as a testament to the age-old traditions of the iSagada. It is low-roofed small building usually found at the center of an ili adjacent to open space paved with stones. Stools and back rests for elders, fashioned out of larger stones, form a ring around platform. Usually, a moyong, which is a large tree considered so sacred that no one can cut any part of it, stands on its center or side. Nowadays, though, the dap-ay hut is no longer built with pinewood and cogon but with galvanized iron and cement. The Dap-ay is the center of political, social, and religious functions in the community. It is the place of discussion for socio-economic issues, politics, values, beliefs, population concerns, the environment, opportunities, and any other topic affecting the lives of the people. It is also the center of traditional ceremonies and practices. Today, it remains the venue for making decisions, especially on land matters. Decisions are based on the rule of the majority. After a decision is made, information dissemination is the responsibility of the dumapay, or the people belonging to one dap-ay. The dap-ay is ruled by a council of male leaders known as amam-a who earned the distinction through age, wise decisions, and religious practice of all cultural traditions. But only minor or less contentious cases are discussed in the dap-ay nowadays with most cases go to the Lupong Pambarangay (village court). The dap-ay in some settlements have lost their traditional prestige as many of their elders have died out.

Other cultural practices that are no longer strictly imposed among tourists is the Obaya. Obaya is a time to rest for a day or a number of days, when people are not allowed to do their usual work in the fields nor go out of the community. Sometimes, and Obaya forbids visitors from entering the community. The extent and duration of the obaya depends on the reason for its imposition, such as the burial of a community member or a traditional ritual being performed at that time. Such rituals include the begnas, which signals the start of major event like planting or harvesting rice. Due to the pressing need to earn a living, however, the observance of obaya even among the iSagada has waned, as many people would rather work rather than take time off to take part in the ritual. In the past, most of their work revolved around the rice fields, where the dap-ay rituals were also based.

Traditional rituals during weddings and death are sometimes shortened wherein instead of performing the ritual for a week, the ama-a (council of leaders) can be requested into doing the ritual only for a period of three days. In weddings, the groom may ask permission of amam-a to do away with the rule that the newly-wed couple cannot go out the community for a couple of days, as this would affect their work. Babayas is the term for marriage ceremonies.

As for death and burial where butchering a total of 21 pigs and a number of chickens for all the rituals performed is a practice, is believed by almost a iSagada to be lessened because of economic reasons.

Unity has always been part of the iSagada culture. A customary practice that is slowly vanishing is the ob-obbo, or the cooperative effort of a group of people, which is often done during kay-kay (a time to prepare the fields for dry farming) or sama (a time to prepare the rice fields for wet farming). Ob-obbo practice extends to financial matters especially during special events like the babayas (traditional marriage ritual) and when someone dies. Supon (gift money or contribution) to the couple or to the head is a mean of investment in which the couple or the bereaved family needs to make a similar exchange in the form of money, goods, or services in the future, although not necessarily for the same occasion.

  1. Population Size and Growth Rate

 Based on the census data from the Philippine Statistical Authority (PSA), the population growth rate of the municipality started to decline during the 1970’s dropping down to a growth rate of 3.09% in 1980. Primordial causes of the decreased rate of population include the municipality’s 32 out-migration trend due to the absence of tertiary schools as well as employment opportunities outside the municipality for the locales of the municipality.

  1. Population Distribution

Among the five (5) zones of Sagada namely Northern Zone, South Central Zone, Eastern Zone and South Zone. The Northern Zone has the highest population with a percentage of 0.407%  while the least populated zone is the Eastern  Zone with 0.137%.

  1. Population Density

The gross population density of the municipality is 1.22 persons per hectare (122 person per square kilometer) on the basis of 9,969.00 hectares of land as of the 2014 CBMS population. This shows a relative increase from the 2010 density of 1.13 persons per hectare (113 persons per square kilometer).

HEALTH AND SANITATION SUBSECTOR

Health Facilities

The main health facilities in Sagada are St. Theodore’s Hospital which is a private hospital, the RHU and eight Barangay Health Stations (BHSs). Most of the leading causes of consultations and some of the admitted cases were reported as manageable at the RHU and BHSs level.

The RHU has been certified for Sentrong Sigla Phase 1 only. It is also accredited for Outpatient Consultation and Diagnosis Package (OPB) and Tuberculosis Directly-Observed Treatment Shortcourse (TB-DOTS) under the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth). It is equipped with the drugs, medical supplies, and equipment requirements for PhilHealth accreditation. St. Theodore’s Hospital is also accredited by the DOH and PhilHealth.

THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT