Madridejos, Cebu

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Fishing boats at Kota beach
Fishing boats at Kota beach
Official seal of Madridejos
Map of Cebu Province with Madridejos highlighted
Map of Cebu Province with Madridejos highlighted
Madridejos is located in Philippines
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 11°16′N 123°44′E / 11.27°N 123.73°E / 11.27; 123.73Coordinates: 11°16′N 123°44′E / 11.27°N 123.73°E / 11.27; 123.73
Country Philippines
Region Central Visayas (Region VII)
Province Cebu Province
District 4th district of Cebu
Founded 2 January 1917
Barangay 14 (see § Barangays)
 • Type Sangguniang Bayan
 • Mayor Salvador Dela Fuente (NUP)
 • Vice mayor Floreto Batayola
 • Town Council
 • Total 23.95 km2 (9.25 sq mi)
Population (2010 census)[3]
 • Total 34,905
 • Density 1,500/km2 (3,800/sq mi)
 • Voters(2013)[4] 24,319
Demonym Lawisanon
Time zone PST (UTC+8)
ZIP code 6053
IDD: +63 (0)32
Income class 4th class
PSGC 072228000

Madridejos is a fourth income class municipality in the province of Cebu Province, Philippines.[2] According to the 2010 census, it has a population of 34,905.[3] In the last election, it had 24,319 registered voters.[4] It is one of the three municipalities that make up the island of Bantayan, which lies to the west of the northern tip of Cebu. It is bounded to the south by the municipality of Bantayan, and on all other sides by the Visayan Sea.

There is a light station – LS Madridejos[5] – about 50 metres (160 ft) north of the mean highwater mark at Kota point  11°18′08″N 123°43′45″E / 11.30222°N 123.72917°E / 11.30222; 123.72917.


Lawis was the old name of Madridejos. Even today people still use the name "Lawis", meaning "promontory", the portion carved out to constitute the municipality of Madridejos being the peninsula located on the northern side of Bantayan island facing the Visayan Sea.

During the time of Governor Sebastián Hurtado de Corcuera (1635–1644), the Visayas were continually harassed by the Moros, who wreaked dreadful havoc, capturing, massacring, robbing, sacking churches, and burning everything there was.

History credits Loreto Mangubat[a] as the first to settle in this part of the island of Bantayan. He was the founder of Lawis in the middle of the 16th century. It was also Mangubat who proclaimed it a visita (beginnings of a parish) of the town of Bantayan.[dubious ][6][circular reference]

Lawis was the first organized settlement in the northern part of the island of Bantayan where barrio Mancilang of Madridejos is now located. Mangubat initiated the construction of the kota or fort used as a refuge and defence against the Moro pirates who plundered towns along the sea coast of the Visayas.[b] He also erected a church whose ruined walls and post from the ravages of wars and Moro raids can still be seen in the northernmost part of the town.

He was a direct descendant of Lapu-Lapu, the Cebuano hero. At the age of 13, he was taken to Spain for training. he went back to Madridejos at the age of 50.[clarification needed] He was an arm bearer of Spain. He was called Captain. His name was changed to Lazaro because he came back to the town on St. Lázaro’s Day (December 17). He was married to Lucia Maru, a native of the town.

Ruins of Kota at Madridejos

The Kota was built in 1790. The people of the town grouped at the Kota when they can hear the sound of the "Budyong" (a kind of shell) for safety, warning the people Moros are coming in vintas.

Kota was built by forced labor. People were told to work every Saturday, only once a week, failure to report to help in the construction received punishment: 25 lashes of a whip and one day imprisonment. Nonoy Isidro Mancio, a native, was the chief of those who watched for the coming of the Moros.

Blowing of the Budyong [c] – served as signal of the coming of the Moros. A watch tower was built in Kaongkod, a barrio about four kilometers (2.5 miles) from the fort. It is the place from where the approach of the Moros could easily be seen, to give a timely warning to the townsfolk of their coming.

The general scenery of Lawis was that of a quiet place, of virgin grounds covered by small shrubs and lantana. When more people discovered Lawis and flocked to it, the place became a visita.[7]

In 1917 barrio Lawis became a town named Madridejos.[8]:92–94 This was the name given to the third town of Bantayan Island in honour of Benito Romero de Madridejos the former Archbishop of Cebu.[d] The town's feast day is celebrated annually on 8 December.

Immaculate Conception parish church[edit]

In the year 1600, before Madridejos was made into a town, there was a barrio called Lawis at the tip of Bantayan island. In this barrio was a chapel built by the Augustinians who also built the parish church of Bantayan in the year 1580.

The chapel was located within the Spanish Fort near the seashore. Inside the chapel, there was a framed picture of La Virgen Purisima Concepcion which was the object of devotion and before which the Holy Rosary was prayed every afternoon. Once a month and during church feasts, the chapel was visited by the priest of Bantayan to say mass and celebrate its annual feast.

In the year 1700 there was an image of La Virgen Purisima carved in Bantayan from batikuling wood. It was 16 inches (41 centimetres) tall and was placed on the altar of the first chapel built by the Augustinian priests near the seashore of barrio Lawis.

Since olden times, every October the Virgin is brought in a fluvial procession and the Holy Rosary is prayed. The feast was celebrated every eight day of December, until Lawis became a parish in the year 1928.

Second World War[edit]

  • 1942 - occupation by Japanese Imperial forces.
  • 1945 - liberation by the Philippine Commonwealth troops of the 3rd, 8th, 81st, 82nd & 83rd Infantry Divisions of the Philippine Commonwealth Army which landed in Madridejos at the front of battles against Japanese forces in the Battle of Bantayan.[citation needed]


Madridejos comprises 14 barangays:

PSGC Name pop.
±% p.a.
072228001 Bunakan 1870 1759 2.25%
072228002 Kangwayan 1071 797 11.35%
072228003 Kaongkod 3088 2484 8.24%
072228004 Kodia 2071 1590 10.10%
072228005 Maalat 2042 1907 2.52%
072228006 Malbago 2583 2364 3.28%
072228007 Mancilang 4662 3986 5.87%
072228008 Pili 2153 1847 5.74%
072228009 Poblacion 3768 3842 −0.71%
072228010 San Agustin 2201 2144 0.96%
072228011 Tabagak 1874 1724 3.08%
072228012 Talangnan 3645 3146 5.50%
072228013 Tarong 2212 1734 9.26%
072228014 Tugas 1665 1349 7.96%
TOTAL 34,905 30,673 4.82%
Mancilang: 4,662 (13.8%) Poblacion: 3,768 (11.1%) Talangnan: 3,645 (10.8%) Kaongkod: 3,088 (9.1%) Malbago: 2,583 (7.6%) Tarong: 2,212 (6.5%) San Agustin: 2,201 (6.5%) Pili: 2,153 (6.4%) Kodia: 2,071 (6.1%) Maalat: 2,042 (6.0%) Tabagak: 1,874 (5.5%) Bunakan: 1,870 (5.5%) Tugas: 1,665 (4.9%)Circle frame.svg
  •   Mancilang: 4,662 (13.8%)
  •   Poblacion: 3,768 (11.1%)
  •   Talangnan: 3,645 (10.8%)
  •   Kaongkod: 3,088 (9.1%)
  •   Malbago: 2,583 (7.6%)
  •   Tarong: 2,212 (6.5%)
  •   San Agustin: 2,201 (6.5%)
  •   Pili: 2,153 (6.4%)
  •   Kodia: 2,071 (6.1%)
  •   Maalat: 2,042 (6.0%)
  •   Tabagak: 1,874 (5.5%)
  •   Bunakan: 1,870 (5.5%)
  •   Tugas: 1,665 (4.9%)


Population census of Madridejos
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1980 18,865 —    
1990 25,746 +3.16%
1995 26,506 +0.55%
2000 29,020 +1.96%
2007 30,673 +0.77%
2010 34,905 +4.82%
Source: National Statistics Office[3][9]

In the last election, it had 24,319 registered voters, meaning that 70% of the population are aged 18 and over.[4]


Fishing fleet leaving Madridejos, early evening.
Beach and walkway at Kota Point, with the light station visible past the end of the walkway.

The main industries of Madridejos are fishing, poultry and tourism.

Because of its rich fishing grounds, Madridejos earned the name of "Little Alaska of the Philippines": the first canning factory in the country was established here, but it lost its sustaining impact in the history of the municipality after it was bombed during World War II. At present, poultry-raising is a growing industry and Madridejos provides a substantial quantity of eggs produced for sale to the neighboring provinces.

Madridejos also hosts a fairly substantial tertiary college – Salazar College.[10]


Madridejos can be reached by boat from Cebu City via Santa Fe with 75-minutes ferry service to San Remigio (Hagnaya) via Island Shipping or SuperShuttle Ferry. Bus (jeepney) travel to Madridejos via the municipality of Bantayan takes about one hour.

There are currently NO overnight boats from Cebu City to Bantayan Island, nor are there any scheduled commercial air flights. Private air companies occasionally fly smaller Cessna and Piper aircraft into Bantayan Airport.


  1. ^ a Visayan word that means to raid for pillage and booty, a pirate
  2. ^ However Fray Juan de Medina wrote: "The incumbent of the benefice has now built a small fort; but I believe in my soul that, when the Indio catches sight of the enemy, he will abandon it instantly."[a]
  3. ^ Some sort of horn – could be a conch shell or the horn of a carabao
  4. ^ Benito Romero O.F.M. † (appointed 28 January 1876 - died 4 November 1885)


  1. ^ "Municipalities". Quezon City, Philippines: Department of the Interior and Local Government. Retrieved 8 April 2013. 
  2. ^ a b "Province: Cebu". PSGC Interactive. Makati City, Philippines: National Statistical Coordination Board. Retrieved 8 April 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay: as of May 1, 2010" (PDF). 2010 Census of Population and Housing. National Statistics Office. Retrieved 1 April 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c "2013 National and Local Elections Statistics". Commission on Elections. 2013. 
  6. ^ "HISTORIA - Existe otro Madridejos en Filipinas". Retrieved 7 January 2015. 
  7. ^ Spicer 1967
  8. ^ Lavilles 1965
  9. ^ a b "Population and Annual Growth Rates by Province, City and Municipality: Central Visayas: 1995, 2000 and 2007" (PDF). National Statistics Office. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 June 2011. 
  10. ^ "SCSIT – Salazar Colleges and Institute of Technology". Retrieved 7 January 2015. 

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