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09 August 2007 (The Inquirer) – Part of a prehistoric site at Cagayan de Oro has been levelled to create a quarry. You can read more about the destruction of the Hulaga site here.

Quarrying in Cagayan de Oro archeological site assailed

A hill here where fossils and artifacts dating back to 377 AD have been found was recently converted into a quarry site, angering anthropologists because this allegedly threatens the destruction of what could be one of the most important archeological sites in the country.

Known among archeologists as the Huluga open site, the hill in sitio (sub-village) Taguanao, Barangay (village) Indahag here has been the subject of a major archeological study by a team led by renowned anthropologist Dr. Erlinda Burton of Xavier University since the 1970s.

The team said a prehistoric village once existed on the site as evidenced by stone tools and ornaments and a female skull they have dug up.

Several pieces of obsidian glass and a whale harpoon tip found at the site also prompted Burton’s team to call for the site’s preservation, citing the need for a wider scientific study on the subject.

In 1991, the National Museum said the site has cultural and archeological significance and described the artifacts found there as ‘invaluable Philippine heritage.

The Huluga open site has also been cited in several archeological books and websites, including those of the United States Archeological Society and a German association of archeologists.

Former mayor Vicente Emano, however, approved a government bridge project in the area about two years ago despite opposition.

The destruction of the Huluga open site continues, according to anthropologists and groups backing its preservation.

Read more about the destruction of the Huluga Open Site.

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About the Author

Noel Tan ()

Dr Noel Hidalgo Tan is the Senior Specialist in Archaeology at SEAMEO-SPAFA, the Southeast Asian Regional Centre for Archaelogy and Fine Arts.

Website: http://www.SoutheastAsianArchaeology.com

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