A group of Aboriginal people who reside mainly in the border area between Hualien and Nantou counties were recognized yesterday as the Sediq, the country’s 14th distinct indigenous group.
At its regular weekly meeting, the Cabinet approved a proposal by the Council of Indigenous People to classify the Sediq as a separate group from the Atayal tribe.
Premier Chang Chun-hsiung (張俊雄) said that the approval was based on the spirit of “respecting the will of native people” and in accordance with the principle of “equality” enshrined in laws and regulations to guide the government’s Aboriginal policies.
“On behalf of the government, I hereby send my sincerest congratulations to the Sediq people on the restoration of their own tribe name,” Chang said.
Minister of the Council of Indigenous People Icyang Parod said the move would help the Sediq to “raise their self-identification and safeguard the tribe’s cultural heritage.”
The Sediq will have their own representatives on the council’s highest policy-making commission, Icyang said.
The council said there are about 6,000 to 7,000 Sediq.
The Japanese colonial government arbitrarily lumped together Aboriginal groups into “nine tribes” during its occupation of Taiwan, under which Taroko, Sediq and other groups were labeled as Sediq, a subgroup of the Atayal tribe.
The classification system was not challenged until the Democratic Progressive Party government came to power in 2000. It recognized the Tsao as the 10th tribe in 2001, followed by the recognition of the Kavalan, Taroko and the Sakizaya.
Ever since the recognition of the Taroko in January 2004, several negotiations had been held on whether the Sediq would agree to also use the name Taroko. But the discussions proved fruitless, as “both groups had been inconsistent on their specific names,” Icyang said.
The Sediq tribe filed an application with the council for recognition in April 2006.
The Cabinet decided to approve the recognition of the Sediq after a review committee under the direction of Minister-without-Portfolio Liu Yu-shan (劉玉山) concluded that the Sediq’s demand should be respected in accordance with the UN Declaration of Aboriginal Rights, Article 10 of the amendment to the Constitution and the Aboriginal Basic Law (原住民族基本法).
Wantan Diro, executive director of the Sediq Tribe Name Restoration Association, was excited yesterday by the Cabinet’s decision.
“Hallelujah! Thank God!” Watan said when asked by the Taipei Times for comment by telephone.
“I would like to thank Premier Chang for his decisiveness, the Council of Indigenous Peoples, the seven Aboriginal legislators and all the media organizations that have reported on our efforts [to gain recognition],” he said.
Wantan said that official recognition is not the end, but the beginning of another page in the tribe’s history.
“We will need to start organizing our tribal assembly, preparing for autonomy, building a tribal identity, and most importantly — revive, preserve and reform the Sediq language, culture, customs, sciences and education,” he said.
Wantan said that though several tribes have received official recognition in recent years, their people still do not feel attached to their new tribal identity.
“So we’re planning on a campaign with the goal to get at least 10,000 Sediqs to register themselves as Sediqs with the Household Registration Offices,” he said.
As for culture, Watan believed that, in addition to reviving and preserving the wisdom of the tribe’s ancestors, “we need to also reform some of it according to new technical or scientific developments and findings, so that our ancient knowledge won’t become outdated.”
Taiwan from Thursday is to reinstate visa exemptions for passport holders from 65 countries. Mandatory quarantine for arriving travelers is to be lifted on Oct. 13 , when restrictions on inbound and outbound tour groups are also to be lifted. The following is a list of answers to common questions regarding how the new regulations are to affect inbound international visitors Which passports will have visa-free entry privileges? Eleven more countries on Thursday are to join 54 countries that were given visa-free privileges on Sept. 12. Passport holders from Japan, South Korea, Chile, Israel and Nicaragua can stay in Taiwan for up to 90 days without a visa. Taiwan is also to resume 30-day visa-free stays for citizens of the Dominican Republic, Singapore and Malaysia. Passport holders from Thailand, Brunei and the Philippines are to be allowed to stay in Taiwan for 14 days visa-free. Taiwan on Sept. 12 resumed 90-day visa-free entry for passport holders from the US, the UK, Ireland, Canada, Australia, New
PRIDE AND FURY: Supporters of the Taiwan People’s Communist Party sang in Tainan, while Taiwan loyalists in Kaohsiung vowed to ‘protect Taiwan until death’ Two small Taiwanese groups at the far ends of the debate over relations with Beijing marked the National Day of the People’s Republic of China yesterday with flag raisings and flag burnings — opposite responses at a time of rising tension over the Taiwan Strait. Oct. 1 marks the day that Mao Zedong (毛澤東) proclaimed the People’s Republic of China in 1949, with the defeated Republic of China government fleeing to Taiwan at the end of that year, where — after democratic reforms — it remains to this day, neither recognizing the other. China’s national day is not officially marked in any
Adolescents aged 12 to 17 can start receiving the Novavax COVID-19 vaccine from tomorrow, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday, adding that the second phase of inoculations using Moderna’s bivalent vaccine would begin next week. The Ministry of Health and Welfare’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices has recommended that the Novavax vaccine can be administered to adolescents aged 12 to 17 as their primary series of vaccines or as a booster shot. It also allowed a mix-and-match approach. The Novavax vaccine is a good choice for eligible recipients who are worried about possible adverse reactions from other COVID-19 vaccines, said
‘CONSENSUS’: The CECC would brief the Cabinet on its reopening plans if data show that a local outbreak proceeded as it had predicted, Premier Su Tseng-chang said The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) could announce today that it would fully reopen borders on Oct. 13, Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) said yesterday. Su in the morning inspected Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport to check if airport personnel were prepared to cope with an expected rise in passenger volume today, when the weekly cap for international arrivals would increase to 60,000 people. The requirement for a saliva-based polymerase chain reaction test upon landing is also to be waived. The CECC last week announced that a zero-quarantine policy for international arrivals could be implemented from Oct. 13, depending on the local