The Kamahardikaan Festival in Bongao

Kamahardikaan Festival Bongao Tawi-Tawi Calendar Date Schedule Celebration Autonomous Region In Muslim Mindanao Armm Budjang Agal Parade Float Costume Activities Fluvial Parade Trade Fair Scubasuero The Kamahardikaan Festival is celebrated annually in Bongao in Tawi-Tawi Province. The Kamahardikaan Festival brings out the cultural richness of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). The highlight of the festival is the showcase of talents for search of Budjang Tawi-Tawi and is the most anticipated event is the Agal-Agal, where different municipalities compete for the best parade float and best costumes. Other activities include the fluvial parade, trade fair, scubasurero and sports competition. The Kamahardikaan Festival is usually held in September on the streets of the provincial capital, Bongao. Kamahardikaan means “to honor” in Sinama, which is the vernacular of the Sama—the collective name of the people of Tawi-Tawi. The event will project the Continue reading

The Seaweed Festival in Bongao

Seaweed Festival Bongao Tawi Tawi Location Agal Agal Celebration Harvest Carrageen Calendar Date Week September Costume Culture Tradition Street Dancing Parade Trade Fair Regatta Night Beauty Pageant The Seaweed Festival is held annually in Bongao in Tawi-Tawi Province. Also known as the Agal-Agal Festival, it is a thanksgiving fest festivity to celebrate the success of the local harvest. Agal-Agal means carrageen seaweed. The Seaweed Festival is similar to the Meguyaya festival. This week-long festivity is celebrated every fourth week of September showcasing the region’s economic potentials, culture, costumes and tradition; with like activities such as; streetDancing Parade and field demonstration; Trade fair, Regatta; Cultural Night Presentation; Beauty Pageant;Environment Protection and Conservation Forum; and to capped with is the conduct of business matching with ASEAN countries. Continue reading

Sheikh Karimul Makhdum Day in Simunul

Sheikh Karimul Makhdum Day Festival Simunul Tawi Tawi Province Date November Celebration Islam Muslim Missionary Malaysia Mosque Fluvial Parade Bongao Schedule Prayer Calendar Costume Religion Culture The Sheikh Karimul Makhdum Day is November 7 every year and its festivities is held in Simunul, Tawi-Tawi Province. This festival is celebrated in commemoration for his good deeds for bringing Islam to the land. Sheikh Karimul Makhdum was a 13th century Muslim missionary from Malaysia who established the first mosque in the Philippines; the mosque is located in Tubig Indangan, Simunul, Tawi-Tawi. The Sheikh Karimul Makhdum festival is a display of Muslim religion, culture and tradition, similar to Shariff Kabunsuan Festival. This festivity is a very popular among foreign and local tourists. A fluvial parade, depicting the journey taken by Sheikh Makhdum, passes through Bongao town to Simunul, followed . by a short program and a congregational prayer at the Sheikh Karimul Makhdum Mosque, a declared national Continue reading

The Jama Mapun Culture

Bajau, Cagayano, Orang Cagayan, Sama Cagayan, Tao Cagayan, SamaThe Jama Mapun (Bajau, Cagayano, Orang Cagayan, Sama Cagayan, Tao Cagayan, Sama) are a Sama-speaking people widely distributed in the area about north Borneo and southwestern Philippines. The largest concentration is in the island of Cagayan de Sulu in southwestern Sulu Sea in the province of Tawi-Tawi (15,423 NSO 1990) in southern Palawan. Including the dispersed segment of the population, the national count is estimated at 22,320 (NSO 1990). Traditionally, the Jama Mapun subsistence technology is based on agriculture and maritime trading, with the cultivation of coconuts for the production of copra as a cash crop. Corn and cassava are alternative staples. Continue reading

The Sama Culture

SamaThe Sama (AA Sama, Jama Mapun, Samal, Balangini, Balangingi, Bangingi, Pangutaran) are a highly variable group with the populations concentrated in Sulu and Tawi-Tawi (118,572) provinces. The core areas are in Siasi (15,248), Tandubas (16,706), and Sitangkai (30,328), and Pangutaran (14,382) (NSO 1990). The national population is about 319,809 (NM 1994). There are three generalized linguistic groupings: western, eastern (Pangutaran), and central. The people group themselves consistent with the dialects they speak and are identified by their home islands. With these as bases, they distinguish at least 20 subgroupings among themselves, including one, Sagaa, whose language is Continue reading

Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao

ARMMThe Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, or ARMM, was created in 1990 to help solve the long-festering Muslim problem and at the same time hasten the economic development of the Muslim areas. At present, however, the ARMM only covers the four provinces of Sulu, Tawi-Tawi, Maguindanao, and Lanao del Sur. Through a plebiscite in 1989, the predominantly Christian residents of the 14 provinces and 10 cities expressed their preference not to join the ARMM.

The people of Mindanao have always looked forward to shaping their destiny Continue reading

Tawi-Tawi Province

Tawi Tawi IslandTawi-Tawi is an island province of the Philippines located in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). The capitals of Tawi-Tawi are Bongao and Panglima Sugala. The province is the southernmost of the country sharing sea borders with the Malaysian State of Sabah and the Indonesian North Kalimantan province. To the northeast lies the province of Sulu and to the west is Sabah in Malaysia. Tawi-Tawi also covers some islands in the Sulu Sea to the northwest, the Cagayan de Tawi-Tawi Island and the Turtle Islands, just 20 kilometers away from Sabah.

Tawi Tawi island lies between the Celebes Sea (southeast) and the Sulu Sea (northwest). Tawi Tawi’s westernmost tip is a scant 40 miles (64 km) east of Borneo. Of volcanic origin, Tawi Tawi Island is about 34 miles (55 km) long and from 6 to 14 miles (10 to 23 km) wide and is hilly and heavily wooded. The inhabitants are primarily Sama, a Muslim people speaking Sama-Bajau languages of Continue reading

Manuk-Mangkaw Island in Simunul

Manuk Mangkaw IslandManuk-Mangkaw is an island located slightly beyond and across the channel. It is said to be “floating like an umbrella,” under which submarines of the Allied Forces sought refuge from enemy depth charges during World War II. Manuk-Mangkaw derives its name from a cluster of branches atop an ancient tall tree forming the image of a hen about to walk. It was used as a landmark by seafarers who jestingly called upon the “hen” to take the first inevitable step – ” manok mankaw,” meaning “walk, then walk.”