MATALAM, North Cotabato—In a remote sitio called Pangipasan in the village of Lampayan here, Mery Jane Seriales and her fellow Manobos live off fishing and farming from the rich waters and fertile soil.
Herself a farmer, she depends on planting corn to provide for her two children.
But no matter how bountiful their catch or harvest, residents of Pangipasan find it hard selling their produce.
Before they can sell their goods to neighboring villages, the Manobos must first endure a three- to four-hour walk to the town center. Residents prefer to walk most of the time because the sitio’s muddy roads, filled with potholes and cracks, are accessible only by carabaos, horses and trucks.