About us

ONIC is born

In the 1960s, indigenous peoples guided by peasant sectors joined the struggle for land. Later, in the 1970s, the formation of the Regional Indigenous Council of Cauca (Consejo Regional Indígena del Cauca, CRIC) supported the creation of different regional organizations. Their objective was to promote an indigenous political platform.


Our culture is all we are, all we think, the way we live, and the aspects that set us apart from the non-indigenous world and between peoples. It is a social construct learned through centuries and along the appropriation process of ancestral knowledge that involves language, medicine, dance, songs, spirituality, rituals, and the practices for people care and for the beings of the land.


It refers to the action and ability to organize ourselves and decide how to govern our lands. Autonomy must be performed on the basis of the Independent Indigenous Law and our independent rights. In addition, it entails the struggle for the recognition of our independent system of governance and justice.

Self Government

The ONIC (Organización Nacional Indígena de Colombia – National Indigenous Organization of Colombia) is an authority of government, justice, legislation and representation of the indigenous peoples of Colombia. There are important instances in its structure:

National Congress

It is the supreme authority of government among the indigenous peoples of ONIC. They have their meetings every four years. The Political Mandate gathers the reflections and decisions of each congress; there, the activities and policies of the organization for the following period are defined. Representatives from all ONIC affiliate organizations participate in the congress.

Assembly of Authorities

It is formed by the senior counsellors of the ONIC affiliates. When the members of the Congress are not meeting, this assembly is the highest authority of the organization.

Indigenous Parliament

It is the area whose responsibility is the development and discussion of the independent laws based on the autonomy of indigenous peoples.