Timuay Alim M. Bandara




Timuay Alim M. Bandara is a member of Minted sa Inged (Supreme Council of Chieftains of the Timuay Justice and Governance (TJG) and Head Claimant of the Teduray and Lambangian Ancestral Domains Claim (TLADC) in portions of Maguindanao and Sultan Kudarat provinces. He has lobbied for the full inclusion of UP Rights in the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL). He also serves as Head Secretariat of the Independent IP Voice in the Peace Process. He is from Lahangkeb, Rempes, Upi, Maguindanao, Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).


Tiyawan: Teduray and Lambangian Conflict Settlement Process

This presentation is about the Tiyawan, a conflict settlement process of the Teduray and Lambangian tribes under the Timuay Justice and Governance (TJG), an Indigenous Political Structure (IPS) or traditional governance system in Teduray and Lambangian society.

The paper is not a product of academic studies but a collation of experiences in conflict settlement within the Teduray and Lambangian ancestral domain areas. It will discuss the Teduray and Lambangian as a people and the operation of the TJG in accordance with six guiding principles in the Ukit, Tegudon and Dowoy, which are regarded as customary laws.

Central to this presentation are the “Kefedewan” roughly translated as justice officer(s) and their work called “Tiyawan” or conflict settlement. Tiyawan is not only used to settle conflict but is applied in non-conflict practices such as arrangement of marriages. There is also the “dowoy” system roughly translated as penalty or penalties, which are based on “fedew” or feelings of individuals or groups. The dowoy ranges from “feramfi” (warning) to “fetindegon turus” (death).

The recognition of the existence of the conflict and the willingness of conflicting parties to correct the error are considered most important. At this stage of the tiyawan system the Kefedewan work to repair and restore the “ketete fedew” (ill feelings) into “kefiyo fedew” (good feelings). This way, the relationship of the conflicting parties will be restored.

Fétindégon Turus is the most severe disciplinary action where life can be taken as punishment. But anybody in the village with a good record can stop the execution of the disciplinary action and hold it to remain as declaration. That person, however, is ready to take custody over the accused and prepare for the “bangun” or the restoration of the dead relationship using “tamuk” or traditional items with high symbolic importance in the community.

The exercise of this justice system recently is not without problem. The Teduray and Lambangian themselves run away from this justice system if it is not in their favor and seek out the mainstream court of justice. On the other hand, the non-Teduray and Lambangian run to this justice system to seek refuge if they think the mainstream court of justice is unfavorable to them.