Sanying Community (三鶯部落) held an “end of year protest party” at their village in Sanxia (三峽), Taipei County yesterday. The community located by the Dahan River is made up of Amis aborigines who settled there after coming to Taipei to seek work in the 1970s. In February 2008 the Sanying village was demolished after protestors clashed with police while trying to protect their homes. For more background information see: No City for Old Aborigines at Global Voices and the Sanying Community’s blog (中文).
The Taipei Times reported on the event quoting the community’s chief Kacaw.
“I’m very excited to see so many friends here today. I know all of you have work today, but you still take the time to come out and support us when you hear about the troubles we’re in,” Sanying’s Community chief Kacaw told more than 100 supporters and residents before introducing members of the Sanying Self-Help Association.
“I want you to know that your help and support mean a lot to us, and we want to say thank you,” Kacaw said as the self-help group’s members bowed to the audience.
Film director Hou Hsiao-hsien (侯孝賢) was amongst the crowd and he is one of several well known people who have actively supported the people of Sanying in their battle with the government. A number of special items, including Cape No. 7 posters autographed by director Wei Te-sheng (魏德聖), were auctioned off to raise funds for the community.
The party featured a variety of musical performances by indigenous students from NCCU and NTU, Zheng Bei-long (鄭焙隆) and Black Hand (黑手). The highlight of the night was a rousing set from Taiwanese hip hop group Kou Chou Ching (鄭焙隆). Although it was billed as both a protest and party, the event was held in a wonderfully happy spirit. Let’s hope the people of Sanying can celebrate again next year without having to worry about the future of their community.
*More photos in the Sanying end of year party set at flickr.