SAGADA, Mountain Province, April 26 (PIA) -- Traditional rituals were conducted recently to formally accept the entry of a major development in this tourist town.
Elders led by Indigenous Peoples Mandatory Representative Councilor Jaime Dugao performed traditional rituals called “Apoy” to formally accept and launch the new cell site of Smart Communications at the St. Mary’s Church-Episcopal Diocese of Northern Philippines compound in Poblacion, Sagada.
During the “Panag Apoy”, the elders performed the “Tukab Di Ben Ag” or the opening of the Tapuey jar then the “Sus Uwa” which was done with the butchering of a chicken and cooked together with the “Etag” or smoked meat.
Dugao said that the people of Sagada are culturally sensitive and the rituals are part of the tradition and heritage of the town. He added that the rituals were done since the site being used by the facility is part of the ancestral domain of Sagada and also is within the compound of a church.
Vice Mayor Benjamin Capuyan said that the people of Sagada welcome the entry of Smart to the community and are looking forward to a good partnership. The people will again be enjoying the services of Smart which was cut off several months ago due to some problems.
The LGU will be using faster and better internet connection for its transactions. As a tourist town, it could also help in the promotion of Sagada including the preservation of its rich culture and tradition.
On the part of the church, Saint Mary’s Church Chaplain Father Charles Buking asked the officials of Smart to always be sensitive to the concerns of the people and the parish. He stressed that Smart should have a mutual understanding among the church, the LGU and the community and that they should respect the culture and tradition of the municipality.
Smart Vice President and Department Head for Access Planning and Engineering Patrick Belicena said that the newest cell site facility offers the latest and fastest technology with the Long Term Evolution-Advanced (LTE-A) for the town of Sagada.
Belicena said that this is part of the effort of Smart to bring a world class internet service to the different parts of the country where consumers will have a better mobile experience. In the case of Sagada, aside from the local residents, the thousands of tourists flocking the municipality will also be enjoying a better mobile experience.
He said that the technology brought to Sagada by Smart is the same being offered in major cities and areas abroad including Hong Kong where he recently came from for a vacation.
Smart is ramping up its rollout of LTE-A and carrier aggregation across the country. Carrier aggregation is a feature of LTE-A which enables the combination of two or more radio frequency bands in order to deliver much faster data speeds to mobile phone users. 2-Component Carrier (2CC) carrier aggregation features the combination of two frequencies, while 3CC involves the combination of three frequencies and 4CC combines four bands.
Smart Consumer Sales Group Head John Palanca commended the municipality of Sagada the rich culture and tradition still being practiced and being experienced by Smart with its latest cell site facility.
Palanca assured that the new facility is a state of the art which his very much suitable for the environment of Sagada.
“It really matches the environment of Sagada,” Palacan said adding that it is an environmentally -friendly facility which has an outdoor enclosure with a very small footprint and eats up very little power. It also has a slim tower and small antennas with very little emission pollution.
Aside from the new cell site, Palanca said Smart will also be providing other mobile services and various support to the community such as the provision of trainings on handling computer internet and social media for school, elders and other members of the community and the provision of the Infocast where it can be used by the church and the LGU for important announcements and messages. Redjie Melvic Cawis (EDT/RMC- PIA CAR)