This is the only love story I’ve known where the first wife convinces another woman to marry his man.

Long before, Biao tribal chieftain Duma Bonifacio desires for the Manobo tribe to be educated because their tribe is looked down and swindled. He himself does not know how to read and to write. The problem is, their village is located 16 kilometers way up. So, Duma sought to marry someone who can read and write to assist him in his transaction.

Duma Bonifacio, married Polina many years ago.They have nine children. In the year 2008 ,an educated young Manobo lady and her parents happened to visit in Biao village. Her name is Vilma. Duma saw Vilma. That time, Vilma was a mere high school graduate. The opportune time gave Duma what he looks for. So, he sought to marry her. In the culture of Manobo tribe,men can marry more than one woman as long as he can sustain more than one family. Duma has the prerogative of marrying again but he needs to ask permission from his first wife. At first, Polina in her pride did not want another wife for his husband.

Courting Stage

Duma keeps on going to the very risky neighboring mountain of Baluan only to plead Vilma to marry him. Vilma, full of dreams and in her youth, turned down his offer many times. After some time, Polina pitied his husband. She gave in and took the initiative to personally ask Vilma to marry her husband. To make the story short, Polina convinced Vilma who has a condition. Vilma wants to be a teacher as her older brother is. She only agrees if Duma will be able to send her to college to become a teacher!

So Duma, doing all he can, asked help from Pasali team leader Charles Ty. Ty together with other staff were able to send Vilma to a speed course teacher’s training under Basic Education Assistance for Mindanao (BEAM) Program of Australia at Mindanao State University, General Santos City.

Partners in development

Last 2008, Vilma and Duma  got married. They are blessed with a daughter. Together, they work hand in hand in leading the community to sustainable farming. Vilma also trained some mates to help her teach Manobo kids from nine sub villages of Biao.

What a dream came true for Duma. I think he is wise enough to consider marrying someone to help him realize his vision. Since their marriage, the community have their  kindergarten and two levels in elementary- for the first time ever in the history of Biao.

This is the polygamy I know that turned out for good.

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