Cabiao, Nueva Ecija

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Official seal of Cabiao
Map of Nueva Ecija showing the location of Cabiao
Map of Nueva Ecija showing the location of Cabiao
Cabiao is located in Philippines
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 15°15′N 120°51′E / 15.250°N 120.850°E / 15.250; 120.850Coordinates: 15°15′N 120°51′E / 15.250°N 120.850°E / 15.250; 120.850
Country Philippines
Region Central Luzon (Region III)
Province Nueva Ecija
District 4th District
Barangays 23
 • Mayor Gloria "Baby" Crespo Congco
 • Total 111.83 km2 (43.18 sq mi)
Population (2010)[3]
 • Total 72,081
 • Density 640/km2 (1,700/sq mi)
Time zone PST (UTC+8)
ZIP code 3107
Dialing code 44
Income class 1st class; rural

Cabiao is a first class municipality in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2010 census, it has a population of 72,081.[3]

It is located between the municipalities of San Isidro and San Antonio in the province of Nueva Ecija. The municipalities of Magalang, Candaba and Arayat in Pampanga province. And northwest is the municipality of Concepcion in Tarlac province. It is about an hour and a half drive from Manila. Most of Cabiao's agricultural land is being used to cultivate rice. Also, most of the jobs available are related to agriculture.


Cabiao is politically subdivided into 23 barangays.[2]

  • Bagong Buhay ("Lote")
  • Bagong Sikat
  • Bagong Silang
  • Concepcion (Hacienda)
  • Entablado
  • Maligaya
  • Natividad North (Poblacion)
  • Natividad South (Poblacion)
  • Palasinan
  • San Antonio ("Pantalan")
  • San Fernando Norte
  • San Fernando Sur
  • San Gregorio
  • San Juan North (Poblacion)
  • San Juan South (Poblacion)
  • San Roque
  • San Vicente
  • Santa Rita
  • Sinipit
  • Polilio (Libis)
  • San Carlos
  • Santa Isabel
  • Santa Ines


Cabiao derived its name from its vandalized Malay origin kabyawan (gilingan[same Malay meaning]) in previous Malay form: karyawan- meaning writer at present) meaning grinding tools that used for crushing. The abundance of sugar during the pre-Spanish era is evident in a wide area of kabyaw including the area going to the foot of Mount Arayat. The kabyawan became familiar to the neighboring places due to the concentration of kabyawan in the place where it was located and was identified as Kabyawan and later shortened to “Kabyaw” and eventually altered the spelling due to the influence of the foreign alphabet letters. The used of kabyawan then is prevalent among the natives constituting mainly the ancient tribes of tagalogs that hails from Bulacan and capampangan of which they came in waves of migration from mainland Malay origin as evident from their language similarity. The Kabyawan tools might have been brought by the exploring Malays and later improved by the natives settling in the island of Luzon however there are findings that most of the antiquated wooden kabyawan tools at present can be found in Ilocos where the early Sumatran and Melanesian explorers had embarked earlier than the Malays. Similarly, during that period, the natives of the mountain province whose origin is from mainland China might have been the one responsible in introducing the said crushing tools which we know now as the KABYAWAN. The settlement that has been known as Sinipit, Plasinan, Pantalan, Pinaglamoan, Kandumpa, Kambabalo, Longalong, Mayayade, Tinalan, Makabaklay, Saklang and Palanas were words and terms taken from Malay and the tribal dialect in existence during that period. Cabiao as termed today was a just balangay of the once prosperous of empire of the campampangan settlement named Candaba, as it was discovered by the exploring Spanish conquistadores in 1590. The visita of Cabiao was perhaps established somewhere between 1765 and 1767 by the Jesuit Missionary before they were sent back to Spain under the order of King Charles III of Spain to recall all the Society of Jesus religious order to return to Spain thereby banishing them from all the Spanish dominions. Cabiao gain its full township of Pampanga in 1797 under the term of Governor General Rafael Maria de Aguilar y Ponce de Leon* with the recommendation of the returning order of the Augustinian in the Province of Pampanga and elevates the Visita of St. John Nepomucene that was established by the Jesuits into a regular Parish Church. It was established as one of the municipality of Nueva Ecija in February 9, 1848 upon the order issued by Governor General Narciso Claveria Y Zaldua and upon the thorough evaluation and recommendation made by the Governor General Marcelino Oraa. The growth of Cabiao during that time maybe attributed to its vast marsh and inland water that serves as inland fishery of the area. The Poblacion comprising the three pillars of Spanish governance of the Spaniard namely the Casa Municipal, Casa dela Iglesia and Casa Judicial were erected in 1838 under the term of Don Josef Kabigting as the Gobernadorcillo (the present location of the church, the central school and the intervening residential area between the central school and the church).

The desire of the populace of Cabiao to be free from Spanish domination and tyranny resulted in the uprising in September 2, 1896. Numbering around 700 men (461 listed in the Tablet of Heroes in the Municipal Compound), the townsfolk of Cabiao and the Cabiao Brass Band under the leadership of their Capitan Municipal Mariano Nuñez Llanera together with the people of the neighboring towns of Arayat, Deliquente (San Antonio) & Jaen led the siege against the colonizing Spaniards stationed at the Factoria of San Isidro. This event was marked as the First Cry of Nueva Ecija. It did not take too long that the Spanish Colonial Government, succumbed to cede the Archipelago of Philippines to the United States on December 10, 1898 that brought about the Treaty of Paris, and once again the Philippines was under colonial rule this time by the American. In the last days of the Spanish occupation, the Cabiao heroes participated in the declaration of Philippine Republic in Malolos on January 23, 1899. During the Philippine–American War, Cabiao was one of the fiercely battled terrains of the American forces in pursuit of General Aguinaldo’s Forces however most of the populated areas of Cabiao have been saved from the encounter. General Pio del Pilar hold out in the marshes of San Vicente and Sta. Rita to delay the intruding Forces of General Elwell Stephen Otis under the command of General Henry Ware Lawton.

In 1903, the Americans established schools in Cabiao and used the English language as a medium of instructions. Pedro Oreta was elected as the first chief executive of the town under American civil regime followed by the then Mun. President Jose Crespo who established and organized the Presidencia (township hierarchy and organizational plan) constituting the different executive department of the municipality. American occupation in Cabiao has not been as cruel as their Spanish predecessor, however, the people of Cabiao were already afraid to trust the new colonizer. Thomasites missionaries arrive in Cabiao in the early part of 1902 as a part of educating the people of Cabiao and in 1903, the Americans established schools in Cabiao and used the English Language as the medium of instruction. Some rural folks used to study individually in the Spanish methods of learning on arithmetic and reading in their native tongue Tagalog. From 1907-1909, Cabiao was placed under jurisdiction of San Isidro and the executive power was then held by the Municipal President of San Isidro. It was in the term of Office of Municipal President Gonzalo Del Leon that the seat of Municipal Town Hall was erected on the land donated by the Romero family. It was during the term of Jose Lapuz that Judge Bonifacio Ysip was elected as delegate to the constitutional convention held in Manila.

After almost three decades of peace, Japan invaded the Philippines, and the people of Cabiao once again play an important role in the liberation of our country, HUKBALAHAP (Hukbo ng Bayan Laban sa Hapon) or People’s Anti-Japanese Army, was then established in Sitio Bawit,San Julian, Cabiao on March 29, 1942. When the Americans finally liberated the Philippines and as soon as the Central Government was established in Manila, Mariano Guevarra was appointed Mayor of Cabiao. He was the chief executive of the town in 1945. Prudencio Ortiz Luis succeeded Guevarra who occupies the position for only a few months. In the later part of 1945 after the liberation, most of the people of Cabiao were still in the far flung areas of Cambabalu, Saclang Capampangan, Saclang Tagalog and Dumanas and it was during this time that the mayor of this town has been appointed by the late President Manuel Roxas by the name of Ambrosio Aligada. He was appointed as the Chief Executive of the town from 1945-1947. The town of Cabiao was placed under the military government under Pablo Aligada. It was also during the time of Aligada that the Sitio of Palasinan (Presently San Gregorio) comprising the property owned by Don Ramon Fernandez were repopulated by the people coming from said the places whereas the area of Bagong Silang were repopulate by the people coming from Buliran, Guyong-guyong, Luyos of which most of them are Tagalogs. The people of Cabiao were governed by Aligada through coercive and dictatorial rule that is being manifested by the force labor construction of the Cabiao High School which is the monumental relic of his tenure. Isaias Manalastas seated as the progressive mayor through the support HUKBALAHAPs that during that time is at its height from which they fielded their party named Prente Popular however it did not last long due to the suspicion of the military of an imminent grabbing of power where these party is the political front of the Huks. Nieves Pablo, a woman, was the fourth appointed mayor in that same year.

It was also the time when the height of the Huk uprising began when the entire town was the seat of the rebellion, where the 50,000 armed group was inducted in Bawit and in Pasong Diablo only to be captured en masse by the then late General Ismael Lapus through the order of Secretary Magsaysay and the clearing of the entire forested area of Bagong Sikat and Sta. Isabel had begun purposely to eliminate the lair of the Huk rebels. The health center were constructed through the financial support of Defense Secretary Castelo Justice Secretary Hermogenes Concepcion and Doña Maria Romero Buencamino (who was at that time the richest family and the most influential).

Year 1950, when the 1st tenure of the late Paterno Santiano began, the towns public market was constructed through the support of the national government since the towns income cannot at that time support such huge amount of expenditures.

It was the 1st tenure of Gregorio T. Crespo, when the old town hall was renovated and the original Cabiao Central School Building has been restored. The gravelling of Sinipit -San Roque Road was made. Mayor Paterno Santiano reassumed his post as a mayor after a very much contested election results.

The year 1960, when Crespo reassumes his post as Mayor of Cabiao, and the appointment of Pedro T. Wycoco as the Chief of Police. The Gapan- Arayat Road, Cabiao Section were constructed by Golangco Construction and Development Corp. in 1963.

In 1979 the town’s Public Market was rehabilitated through the help of the member of the Parliament Angel Concepcion for which main building was constructed contiguously from the previous two small one.The town of Cabiao was governed by Mayor Crespo for almost three decades bringing together town folks of Cabiao to be one living in peace and serves as the legacy for which Mayor Crespo was known.

The EDSA Revolution of 1986, was the year when Mayor Crespo was dislodged by the appointment as of Atty. Antonio Ll.Lapuz as Officer in Charge of Cabiao. During his tenure the inception of the municipal development planning were made, and listing of priority projects were categorized, however fundings for these infrastructure were no longer made in his tenure because it had lasted only for two and half years.

Atty. Lapuz was succeeded by Eng’r. Ireneo Manahan, who bested in the three way election fight during that time, followed the pattern and plans for which Atty. Lapuz have laid before he left his office. He continue in building roads, barangay health,and brgy. hall including the renovation of the municipal town hall. It was also during that time, that the Sta. Isabel- Bagong Sikat Bridge has been initially built however due to the insufficiency of funds the said bridge has not been finished during his tenure. He had also built a community under his name which later name as Manahan Village.

In his last term of office, mayor Manahan endorse councilor Gloria Baby Crespo Congco as his successor, the eldest daughter of former Mayor Gregorio Crespo and was elected mayor of the municipality in 1998. She is the youngest and the first woman to be elected chief executive of the town. She was also re-elected in the elections of 2001 and 2004.


Population census of Cabiao
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1990 48,850 —    
1995 55,902 +2.56%
2000 62,624 +2.46%
2007 68,382 +1.22%
2010 72,081 +1.94%
Source: National Statistics Office[3]


Aside from the St. John Nepomucene Parish which is a historic site for the 1896 revolutionary battle (Cry of Nueva Ecija) during Philippine Revolution, Cabiao is the home of the following institutions:

  • Cabiao Community Clinic, Sta. Ines
  • Gawad Kalinga Chicago Village, Sitio Burakay, Sta. Rita
  • Gawad Kalinga Fr. Lehman Village, Concepcion
  • Cabiao National High School, Natividad North
  • Cabiao Municipal Hall, San Juan North
  • Baby's Handicraft, Polilio
  • Polytechnic University of the Philippines



  1. ^ "Official City/Municipal 2013 Election Results". Intramuros, Manila, Philippines: Commission on Elections (COMELEC). 11 September 2013. Retrieved 21 October 2013. 
  2. ^ a b "Province: Nueva Ecija". PSGC Interactive. Makati City, Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 21 October 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c "Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay: as of May 1, 2010". 2010 Census of Population and Housing. National Statistics Office. Retrieved 2012-10-19. 
  • Hipolito, Jose Rivera. History of Cabiao. Kabyawan Books.2010

External links[edit]