Photo by Comenei Ali
COTABATO CITY—Bangsamoro Sports Commission (BSC) is reviving the indigenous games of the Bangsamoro thru organizing a 3-day competition held on Oct. 19-21, in front of the Office of the Chief Minister (OCM) building, Bangsamoro Government Center in this city.
In line with the Indigenous Peoples’ (IP) Month celebration, the traditional sports competition focused on two games, namely the Sipa sa Manggis and Sipa sa Lama.
The term Sipa literally means “to kick”; Manggis means “sweet victory”; while Lama means “playground”.
Sipa sa Manggis is one of the traditional sports of the Bangsamoro that symbolizes fame, power, honor, and pride. This game is played by kicking a small ratan-made ball upward to hit the hanging Manggis case that is about 10 meters in height. Each case box contains a monetary reward.
On the other hand, Sipa sa Lama is played by gathering players in a circle formation. Each player takes turns hitting the ball to keep it on air as long as possible until a player fails to kick the ball.
Through the IP month celebration, BSC encouraged the use of indigenous sports as a tool for community peace-building and youth development, and use athletics to foster a culture of mutual respect, understanding, and peaceful coexistence across culturally varied populations in the Bangsamoro region.
BSC Chairperson Nu-man Caludtiag said that the sports event was designed to promote and preserve the traditional or cultural sports of the Bangsamoro people that were inherited long time ago.
“Aside from the promotion of our cultural sports, we also want the sports commission to revive and preserve our very own games and encourage the current Bangsamoro youth to play them,” Caludtiag said.
The event was participated by the Maranao, Maguindanaon, and Iranun players coming from the provinces of Lanao Del Sur, Maguindanao del Sure, and Maguindanao del Norte, and players from Special Geographic Area (SGA).
For the Sipa sa Manggis game, players got prizes ranging from Php500.00 to Php5,000.00 by kicking the ball 3 times up and hitting the equivalent amount of money that was hooked in the hanging Manggis above.
Meanwhile, for the Sipa sa Lama, major awards were bagged by players coming from LDS.
The Butig Team took the first prize with Php30,000.00 cash incentives. They also got the Best Player Attire with Php5,000.00 cash prize.
The Sultan Dumalondong Team and Pinguiaman sa Butig Team, both from LDS, won as the 1st runner-up with Php20,000.00 cash prize and 2nd runner-up with Php10,000.00 cash prize, respectively.
BSC Director Salihwardi Alba underscored the necessity of promoting and introducing the cultural sports of the Bangsamoro since it has become an indigent game in the present generation.
“This is just the beginning of promoting our own native sports. We will bring these games to other areas in the Bangsamoro region including the island provinces,” Alba said.
In partnership with the Ministry of Indigenous People’s Affairs (MIPA), Director Alba also mentioned other “Palarong Lahi” such Kadang-Kadang, Sack Race, and Tumba Lata, among others, which are set to be organized within the months of October and November. (Kasan Usop, Jr./BIO)