The Nas Academy of Arab-Israeli content creator Nas Daily released a video to dismiss the claims of the ancient-tattoo artist Whang-Od’s niece which made rounds online.
Showing a video as proof, Nas Academy said it has decided to release it after the grandniece of Apo Whang-Od claimed that the academy is nothing but a scam.
“As a company, we have been champions of the Philippines from Day 1, so this makes us very sad to hear. Let us set the record straight,” the statement said.
Nas Academy released the video in reaction to the accusations. “My grandmother did not sign any contract with [Nas Daily] to do any academy. Some people are taking advantage of our culture. PLEASE HELP US STOP this disrespect to the legacy of Apo Whang-od and the Butbot Tribe,” her grandniece said in the post which has since been deleted.
Nas Academy went on to say that it reached out to Whang-Od to share with the future generations the Kalinga tradition of mambabatok which many consider as a treasure of Filipino culture.
“We approached Whang-Od because just like you, we love her. We love her traditions and are inspired by her. We wanted to share her culture for future generations to appreciate and respect the ancient Kalinga tradition of mambabatok,” Nas Academy said.
Apparently, her family was present when the oldest mambabatok in the country affixed her thumbprint on the contract as seen in the video, adding that there was consent from Whang-Od herself.
“So we pitched her family the idea of creating Whang-Od Academy. Her and her family present both loved this idea, and have worked WITH US to build it, with Whang-Od teaching herself,” the statement said.
“As a matter of fact, Whang-Od’s trusted niece, Estella Palangdao, was present and translated the content of the contract prior to Whang-Od affixing her thumbprint, signifying her full consent to the project,” it continued.
It also clarified that the sales from the Whang-Od Academy will directly go to her and her family.
“This is the clearest evidence that it is not a scam and achieved the consent of her and her immediate family. Everybody was compensated for their time, and for every sale the Whang-Od Academy generates, most of it went directly to her and her family. We just provided the technology and the marketing,” it said.
Nas Academy also made it clear that the reason for taking down the Whang-Od Academy course from their website was done “out of respect” for the family of the mambabatok from Kalinga.
“So naturally, when we saw the falsehoods circulating online, we were sad. The truth is oftentimes not as simple as a ’tweet’. And online falsehoods can be dangerous. Out of respect for her family, we temporarily took down Whang-Od Academy while we resolve any issues that have arisen from these falsehood,” it said.
Towards the end of the statement, the team behind Nas Academy said they consider the issue personal to them especially since 40% of its team is composed of Filipinos.
Watch the video here:
The art of ancient tattooing course was priced at 750 pesos.
Other celebrities who have yet to give provide courses for Nas Academy include Erwan Heussaff and Moira Dela Torre. Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray, on the other hand, has already conducted her course ahead of the two.