New Clark City project improves lives of IPs
New Clark City opened doors to better economic opportunities for indigenous people (IP) living in
Capas, Tarlac with the employment and livelihood programs initiated by the Bases Conversion and
Development Authority (BCDA).
Jaymar Tiglao of Sitio Kalangitan is only one of more than 300 Aetas who are employed in the
construction of New Clark City Phase 1A or the National Government Administrative Center
According to Tiglao, since the start of the development project, many of them in the Aeta
communities no longer need to continue planting camote crops in the upland. Their debts in “sari-
sari” stores had already been paid off with the salaries they got from their more stable jobs as
laborers in New Clark City. Some of them were even able to purchase motorcycles.
Those without jobs no longer hang around doing nothing and have become more productive, Tiglao
said. “Maaga na natutulog ang mga tao dahil maaga na sila nagigising para pumasok. Nawala na
ang mga tambay sa aming lugar.”
Tiglao said his life became better because he now has a more stable job compared in the past when
he used to plant camote and other crops without any assurance of selling them for profit.
Reynaldo Medrano, chieftain of Sitio Kalangitan, echoed the sentiments of Tiglao.
“Nagpapasalamat kami dahil lahat ng pwedeng magtrabaho, nandoon sila sa New Clark City. Sa
akin kasing karanasan, ang magsasaka ay laging bagsak,” said Medrano.
“Yung mga kababayan ko sa Kalangitan, masaya kami na nakikita namin na nandyan sila
nagtatrabaho at kumikita…May trabaho, may mga maayos na daan, at masaya ang bawat pamilya
dahil may pagkain yung mga bata,” Bayani Sumawang, Aeta tribal leader and former commissioner
of the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP), added.
Because of the roads being built to and from New Clark City, access and connectivity have become
possible for everyone, particularly IPs, residents, and farmers for their livelihood. The roads benefit
especially those living in far-flung barangays.
BCDA holds regular dialogues with the NCIP and the communities to assure that they are part of
the New Clark City development.
Financial assistance packages amounting to Php300,000 per hectare (or Php30.00/sq.m.) were made
available, the highest compensation package provided by government, to project-affected people.
Relocations sites within New Clark City were also provided for those whose residential structures
BCDA worked with credible institutions, such as the University of the Philippines and the Asian
Development Bank, to master-plan, and ensure the sustainability and inclusivity of New Clark City.