Banate, Iloilo

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Port of Banate
Port of Banate
Official seal of Banate
Motto: Abante Banate!
Map of Iloilo showing the location of Banate
Map of Iloilo showing the location of Banate
Banate is located in Philippines
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 11°03′N 122°47′E / 11.05°N 122.78°E / 11.05; 122.78Coordinates: 11°03′N 122°47′E / 11.05°N 122.78°E / 11.05; 122.78
Country  Philippines
Region Western Visayas (Region VI)
Province Iloilo
Legislative district 4th district of Iloilo
Founded 1763 (Re-established: 1843)
Barangays 18
 • Mayor Carlos O. Cabangal, Jr.
 • Total 102.89 km2 (39.73 sq mi)
Population (2015 census)[3]
 • Total 32,532
 • Density 320/km2 (820/sq mi)
Time zone PST (UTC+8)
ZIP code 5010
IDD:area code +63 (0)33
Income class 4th class

Banate is a fourth class municipality in the province of Iloilo, Philippines. 51 kilometres (32 mi) north from the provincial capital of Iloilo. According to the 2015 census, it has a population of 32,532 people.[3]

Banate has a port for boats that transport passengers and local products, like rice and bananas, to the island of Negros, which in turn, exports sugar and organic produce to this town.

The town is primarily a fishing and agricultural municipality, with large areas planted with rice, sugarcane, vegetables, beans, coconut and bananas. Banate is well known for Kasag (crabs), ginamos, and the fresh fish, which local entrepreneurs take to and sell in the capital of the province, in many of the non-coastal towns, and even in Manila.


Banate is composed of 18 barangays, 7 of which are along the coast and the rest are in the interior uplands.

  • Alacaygan
  • Bariga
  • Belen
  • Bobon
  • Bularan
  • Carmelo
  • De La Paz
  • Dugwakan
  • Juanico
  • Libertad
  • Magdalo
  • Managopaya
  • Merced
  • Poblacion
  • San Salvador
  • Talokgangan
  • Zona Sur
  • Fuentes


Banate during the Pre-conquest Period[edit]

Images from the Boxer Codex (c. 1595), illustrating an ancient Visayans of Panay during their first contact with the Spaniards.

The settlement in Banate is of ancient origin. It was among the ancient organized territories of the Confederation of Madja-as in Panay (also called by the ancient Bornean migrants as the island of "Madya-as"),[4] which the Spaniards found, when they came to the Island.[5] It was known to the Spanish missionaries during the earliest dates of the colonization as Bobog. The Spanish Augustinian historian Fray Gaspar de San Agustin mentions it in an account about Dumangas and other coastal towns of the Island, where during the ancient time, there was a Principality and trade center that had the most illustrious nobilities in the whole island of Panay. Bobog (Banate), Araut, Anilao, and Hapitan were among the ancient coastal civilizations in Panay.[6]

There are theories saying that the settlers from the powerful ancient thalassocratic Malay empire based on the island of Sumatra, modern day Indonesia (which influenced much of Southeast Asia)[7] arrived in Banate at around 600 A.D., during the second wave of migration from the Sulawesi Island of the southern archipelago of Southeast Asia. First, the most northern part of Iloilo, Estancia, was settled. Some migrants moved to Batad, Balasan and Carles. Then, Ajuy was settled, and from there communities spread to inhabit the present Conception and San Dionesio area. In time, communities of Ajuy spread upland to populate the hamlet of Sara. The families of Sara spread to Lemery. Other families inhabit the coast of Bobog (Banate-Viejo), and traversed the mountain now San Rafael. Some families founded near the River Jalaud. Others moved further South and settled in Irong-irong and finally stopped at Ogtong. These independent coastal settlements were engaged in fishing, and settled near rivers.[5]

Banate during the Spanish Regime[edit]

Fr. Murillo Velarde's 1734 Map of the Philippines showing Banate as one of the ancient towns on the island of Panay.

At the beginning of the Christianisation of Panay, Bobog was a visita[8] of the Augustinian parish and monastery of Dumangas. Gaspar de San Agustin mentioned the existence of the town in his book Conquistas de las Islas Filipinas (1565–1615).[6] Another Augustinian historian Fray Juan Fernandez, in his Monografias de los pueblos de la isla de Panay, affirms that Banate was known in the ancient times as Bobog or Bog-og, which is synonymous to catia, that is to say- glass. The Augustinian friar says that the modern name Banate might have been derived from some flora that abundantly thrive in the town. One possibility is the Butacea, named by Carl Linnaeus as Murraya exotica. If the spelling and the pronunciation are corrupted, and instead of Banate what is written or pronounced is Bangate, it would therefore be the leguminous papilionácea called in botany as Abrus praecatorius.[9]

To the inhabitants, the town's modern name is commonly attributed to the presence of many Bangate trees in the area. According to a local legend, when the Spaniards arrived, all the inhabitants of Banate fled away for safety. An old man, however, failed to escape because he was of advanced age and was already so weak. It was raining then. So, the old man took shelter under the Bangate tree where a Spanish officer found him later on. The white man asked the native; 'Come se llama esto pueblo?", The old man, uncertain what to say, merely said "Bangate" thinking that the Spaniard was asking him about the name of the tree. Unable to understand clearly what the old man mumbled, the Spaniard thought the native had said "Banate". While such legend sounds too absurd to be true, it is the only explanation often given by people when asked why their town is called Banate. Indeed, Bangate trees still abound within the territorial limits of the municipality until now.

Bobog, in the early part of its history as a Christian settlement and a Visita of Dumangas, was placed under the advocation of St. John the Evangelist.[10] In the early part of the 1700s, it was called "Banate Viejo" by the Spaniards. A map of the Philippines, made by the Jesuit priest Fr. Murillo Velarde and published in Manila in 1734, shows Banate Viejo among the ancient towns of the island.[11] The appelative "Viejo", which the Spaniards attached to the early hispanized name of the town, indicates the ancient origin of Banate.

Fr. Juan Fernandez says that Banate was formally established as a municipality in 1763. By then, it acquired as its Visita the settlement of Sinaba-an.[note 1] Fr. Alejandro Arias was appointed as the priest for the town on October 31, 1763.[12]

The Spaniards noted that the town enjoyed good ventilation and healthy climate. The houses were of simple construction, but the community had good defenses to protect itself against the frequent Moro incursions. People were engaged, however, in agriculture, which constituted their main occupation. Fishing was also a very important trade, because of the abundance of the harvest from Banate Bay. At this period, Banate and Anilao formed a single town, which was considerably important.[13]

Being a coastal village with a rich fishing ground, Banate is naturally inclined to flourish. However, it was also a natural target to invaders. In 1764, many people would leave the town because of a disastrous incursion and pillage of the Moros from Mindanao.[12] Fr. Arias, the town's priest was escaping this raid, when he was captured by Moro pirates in that year at the Port of Tayabas. Later, the invaders executed him.[12]

Consequently, after the Muslim pillage, Banate was re-annexed to Dumangas. It later became a Visita with its own teniente de justicia, dependent to Barotac Nuevo for its civil and ecclesiastical government until 1843,[14] when it was declared again as an independent parish, with St. John the Baptist as its titular patron.[9]

There is no extant document or act of legislation recording the date of the formal reestablishment of Banate as a municipality. It was in 1837, however, that the town officially had its first Gobernadorcillo in the person of Felix Baviera. Included within the territorial jurisdiction of the town of Banate during this time were Barotac Viejo and Anilao. The original site of the Poblacion of Banate was in what is now known as Bularan. The small Church there, around which the town grew, was then situated near the shore. Nearby towards the North was the town cemetery. For the market place, nipa and bamboo shacks were constructed near the area where the first Church used to be. During the later part of the 19th century the present Roman Catholic stone Church was constructed in the adjacent barangay which subsequently became the Poblacion or the capital of the town.[12]

Thirteen years after the first Governadorcillo of Banate was appointed, Governor General Antonio Blanco, without doubt forgetting the earlier decree of 1843, declared Banate as an independent parish on 15 April 1850, at the same time as that of Anilao.[9] Another interpretation for this decree might be that: in creating the new Parish of Anilao, Blanco re-affirmed the status of Banate as a Parish. It is possible that considering the destruction of the town on several occasions in the past, carving out a territory from Banate in creating a new parish might be misinterpreted as reducing the town again as a Visita.

Because of the benefit of good natural defenses, which were built after the reestablishment of the town in order to protect those returning after the destruction caused by the Moros, the inhabitants benefited more and more from its advantageous location. Within very short years after the resettlement of the town, Banate recovered to be a notable community with plenty of rice, sugar, tobacco, and pineapple fiber, which the women produced.[13]

The present Church of the parish was built in 1870 by Fr. Eustaqiuo Torés.[15] It was made of stone and wood during the Spanish time. His successor, Fr. Manuel Santos,[16] built the convent made of wood in 1883.[17][note 2]

On 28 October 1898, during the Revolution for Philippine Independence, Banate (which remained loyal to Spain) was reduced to ashes by the rebels under the ill-mannered Juan Maraingan -[18] a leader of one of the bandit groups or "aggraviados" (boyongs, pulahanes, and tulisanes), who took advantage of the unsettled times to come down and attack the Spanish forces and unprotected towns and villages. The revolutionaries welcomed cooperation with these groups, but would later make a clear distinction between the two movements. The relationship between the Principalía-led revolutionaries and the agraviados was marked by distrust and conflict. In the eyes of revolutionaries like Martin Delgado, Ananias Diocno, and Leandro Fullon, the agraviados were outcasts, religious fanatics.[19]

The Parish Priests played important roles in the life of towns of the Philippines during the Spanish Regime. Having its own parish priest added prestige to the status of a municipality during that period. Banate had its first priest in 1763. Below is the list of Spanish Augustinian Friars who served the town during the colonial era:[20]

  • P. Alejandro Arias (1763)
  • P. Bartolome Villa (1843)
  • P. Nicolas Calvo (1854)
  • P. Julian Alonso (1859)
  • P. Eustaqiuo Torés (1870) - responsible for building the stone edifice.
  • P. Manuel Santos (1882) - built a wooden convent.
  • P. Lazaro Ramirez (1890)
  • P. Agapito Lopez (1893)
  • P. Bernardo Arquero(1893) - his name is cast on the largest bell of Banate which is unfortunately, broken.

Banate during the American Regime[edit]

Ludovico Arroyo Bañas, (standing in the middle) with his staff at the Office of the Telecommunications Bureau, Region IV, in Iloilo City, c. late 1950s.

When the Americans seized control of Panay at the later part of 1899, Banate was among the first settlements they bombarded and chose as landing spot for their forces. On October 27, 1899, General Diocno informed General Delgado of the docking at Iloilo of the USS Concord. On board were 3,000 troops and 200 horses. On November 2, two American gunboats bombarded the town of Banate. On the 5th, American forces began their advance outside the frontlines toward San Miguel. Landings were made in Banate on November 25, in Capiz and Calivo in December, and in San Jose de Buenavista in January 1900. Unable to resist the American advance, the Filipino revolutionaries retreated to the mountains of Panay. Delgado retreated to the mountains of Lambunao, Diocno to the hills of Aclan, and Fullon to the vicinity of Mt. Madia-as. By July 1, 1900, the Panay defenders had opted to shift to guerrilla tactics.[21][22]

By the beginning of 1901, the disenchanted revolutionaries had run out of men, ammunition, and food. In February, Delgado surrendered to the Americans. On March 1, Fullon followed suit, and on March 21, Diocno signed the Paz de Aclan. Colonel Salas continued the fight until October.[22]

When the Revolution broke out in 1898, Ciriaco Fuentes, more popularly known as Capitan Takong, was the Gobernadorcillo. He seems to have become also the first local President shortly after the town became part of the United States territory in 1900, upon the arrival and takeover of the American soldiers under the command of Commander Brunnel, who established the American Regime in Banate. During this period, Barotac Viejo and Anilao were reduced as districts under Banate. On 1 January 1918, Barotac Viejo was separated through the Executive Order No. 84 of the American Governor General. On that occasion, the majority of the town Officials of Banate were Barotacnons. As a consequence, there came about a succession of appointed Presidents in Banate, until the time of the next election.[note 3] During the term of Benjamin Buyco as President of the town (1936–1939), Anilao was separated from Banate. Afterwards, Benjamin Buyco also became the first Mayor of Anilao.

During the American Regime, a Banatenhon - Ludovico Arroyo Bañas - was chosen as one of the ten personnel of the American government telegraph service in the Philippines to compose the first and only group of Filipino pensionados who, in 1919, underwent advanced training in wireless telegraphy (radio), at the US Naval Radio School in Cavite. The training of the ten Filipinos was made possible through a special arrangement between the U. S. Naval Authorities in the Philippines and the Insular Government. To select the trainees, a special examination was conducted among the 398 students of the Post-Telegraph School.[23] Later, Bañas (who is one of the prominent figures in the history of Philippine Telecommunications) became the Regional Superintendent of the Bureau of Telecommunications (BUTEL) in Region IV (Panay, Negros, Romblon, and Palawan), at the time of his retirement, on 16 February 1966.[24]


Population census of Banate
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1990 23,364 —    
1995 24,976 +1.26%
2000 27,263 +1.90%
2007 28,714 +0.72%
2010 29,543 +1.04%
2015 32,532 +1.85%
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority[3][25]

In the 2015 census, the population of Banate, Iloilo, was 32,532 people,[3] with a density of 320 inhabitants per square kilometre or 830 inhabitants per square mile.

The 1995 National Census on Population and Housing shows that Banate had a total population of 24,976 excluding those residing in Fuentes (a contested barangay between Banate and Anilao). However, if Fuentes is included, the total population would be 25,597. Banate has average annual population growth rate of 1.21% based on the population change within the years 1990–1995. In the year 2010, the town's population reached 29,543.

The Natives of Banate[edit]

As any other old Spanish town in the province of Iloilo, the natives of Banate were given surnames starting usually with the letter BA, BAL, BAS, etc. after the name of the town itself. This is also true for Barotac Viejo which was once a part of the pueblo which is why one can notice even up to the present that both towns share some families/clans with the same surnames.

Municipal income[edit]

Being a very versatile town with livelihood income both coming from the sea and the farmlands, Banate has generated actual income from calendar year 1995 to calendar year 1999 reaching up to P82,167,999.30. The increase of the town's income was mainly due to the increase in revenue allotment, tax, and operating revenue of the municipality. It could be observed that Banate is increasingly growing in commerce and industry.


Brgy. Carmelo, Banate

The 1995 Census of Population and Housing (which includes Fuentes) recorded a total of 4,761 households with an average household size of 6 person per household for the urban area, and 5 persons per household for the rural area. The urban area, comprising Poblacion, Alacaygan, Bularan, Carmelo, Talokgangan and Zona Sur, had a total household of 1,653. The 12 rural barangays had a total of 2,908 households with San Salvador having the highest number households (480).

The 12 barangays belonging to the rural area had a population of 15,772 or about 62% of the total population of Banate. Of the 12 barangays, San Salvador had the highest population (2,380 or 9.31%), while Fuentes, (a disputed barangay between Banate and Anilao) had the least population of only 621 persons or 4% of the rural population, since some residents considered themselves residents of Anilao.

Population density[edit]

Banate has an A & D area of 5,240.849 and a population of 25,597 as of 1995. The municipal gross density is 500 people/km². Urban density is 1600 people/km², of which Bularan is the highest having a density of 15,700 people/km². In the rural area, population density is 300 people/km². As projected, within the twelve (12) year period (1999–2010), the municipal gross population density will increase from 500 to 600 people/km².

Age-sex distribution[edit]

Of the 25,597 (as of 1995), the male population has numbered 12,949 or 50.59% with those in the age bracket of 5 – 9 years old having the highest population (1,743 or 13%). The age bracket with the lowest percentage are those with the age ranging from 85 years old and above (30 or 0.23%).On the other hand, female population has reached to 12,648 or 49.41% with those in the age range of 5 – 9 years old having the highest number (1,649 or 13%). The female residents with age range of 85 and above number 48 or 0.38%. The date of the census of 1995 shows that the ratio of male and female residents is 102:100.


Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary is popular among the Roman Catholics who compose the majority of the residents in Banate, as well as among the members of the Aglipayan denomination, which has a considerable number of followers in the town.

Based on the 1990 record, the majority of the Banatenhon's are Roman Catholics (16,338 or 70%); the next religious denomination with the second highest number of adherence are the Aglipayans or the members of the Philippine Independent Church (5,057 or 22%); there are 750 Protestants who comprise 3% of the population; Iglesia ni Kristo has 203 churchgoers or 1% of the population; and members of other religious sects like United Church of Christ in the Philippines, Jehovah's Witnesses, Seventh Day Adventist, Muslims, etc. number 1,012 or 4% of the local population.

Statistics on marriage[edit]

A greater percentage of the population 10 year's old and over are single (49.32%) than married (45.75%). About 3.73% are widowed; 0.37% are separated; and 0.82% are common law partners and unknown. The number of unmarried persons is higher among the adult males (4,840) as compared with those who are married (4,174). Among adult females the proportion of married persons is higher (4,253 or 23.09%) than those who are unmarried (4,245 or 23.05%).


Majority of the people living in Banate speak Hiligaynon or 99.54% and 0.46% of the population speaks other Visayan dialects. English and Tagalog are also understood and spoken, and are also used in school, business, and government day to day transactions.

Economic dependency ratio[edit]

As of 1995, a total of 10,711 persons with ages below 15 and over 64 years old are considered dependents; 14,625 belong to the working population with ages 15–65 years old. Hence, there are 7 dependents out of 10 working persons.

Labor force[edit]

As of 1990 the labor force numbered 13,643 persons or 57% of the total population. Of these, there are 6,747 or 49.45% male and 6,896 or 50.55% female ranging the age 15 years old and above. Of the 13,643, 7,886 have stable employment. 5,239 of these are male and 2,647 are female. Population projection shows that from 1995 to the year 2010, the population growth rate is 1.21%. This means an additional potential work force for the municipality, which when properly exploited will generate a maximum income to the town of Banate. The labor force within the twelve (12) year period (1999–2010) will reach to 18,683 and 11,527 of these, will be economically active labor force (15 years old and over).

Banate-Negros Occidental Bridge[edit]

On July 30, 2006, governors from 16 provinces of the Visayas met at the Provincial Capitol of Negros Occidental in Bacolod City to discuss the construction of bridges linking Panay, Negros, Cebu, Bohol, and Leyte. They call these bridges the Trans-Visayas Friendship Bridges. Among these bridges would be the Banate-Negros Occidental Bridge, which would link the Island of Negros to the Island of Panay.[26] Located at the spot nearest to Negros, Banate is the most logical and ideal place for the construction of the connecting bridge between the two islands of the Visayas.[27]

Historical/Unique Landmarks[edit]

The Roman Catholic Church[edit]

The Catholic parish of Banate celebrated its 250th foundation anniversary in 2013 which was established by the frayles of the Augustinian Order in 1763. The present church was erected under the supervision of Fray Eustaqio Tores, OSA in 1870 but was left unfinished which is why there is no particular architectural style found in the edifice. Nevertheless, the church of Banate withstood the tests of time, from fires to the bombings of the war. Built in the shape of a Latin cross, it is one of the old churches in Iloilo, still intact and whole from the narthex to the apse and transepts unlike some churches which were either cut into half or damaged either by nature or war. It is made of corals, limestone and rocks and put together through a mixture of Apog and Eggs. It is also one of the widest, in terms of space, having three spacious naves all in all surpassing even that of Sta. Barbara or Lambunao. The last Augustinian curate of Banate, Fray Bernardo Arquero, OSA, commissioned the three bells donated by Donya Carmen Baban and cast by the renowned bell-caster Hilario Sunico. The campana mayor is one of the largest in the island but it is, unfortunately, broken. It is the last existing old Augustinian-built church in the north. It was built under forced-labor. The parish also boasts of having the complete old baptismal, marriage and death records dating back to the early 1900s which can be found in the parish office. Ironically, the modern church of the Philippine Independent Church stands across it.

Parish and Assistant Priests who served the Parish of Banate from 19-present (records from 1763–1898, 1899–1909, 1941–44 [World War II Era] are perhaps gone already). After the revolution against Spain, the parishes under the friar orders, Banate being one (under the Augustinians), were handed over to the care of the secular clergy of the dioceses. The following are the names of the priests who had performed their ministry in Banate, as retrieved in the parish register of baptisms:[28]

  • Reverendo Padre Ezequiel Pioquinto
  • RP Mayolo Silva
  • RP Doroteo Imperial - Parroco Interino (Acting Parish Priest)
  • RP Mayolo Silva
  • RP Ramon Declaro - Parroco Interino
  • RP Mayolo Silva
  • RP Carlos Legislador - Cura Parroco de Barotac Viejo y encargado de la parroquia de Banate
  • RP Tomas Paguntalan
  • RP Gregorio Rosaldes
  • RP Pedro Sedantes
  • RP Miguel Tadifa - Parroco Interino
  • RP Pedro Sedantes
  • RP Vicente Silloras
  • RP Jose Villasis
  • RP Ireneo Pontiliano
  • RP Francisco Garcisto
  • RP Policarpio Parcon


During the time of Fr. Parcon, the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer (Redemptorist Fathers) had a mission in Banate, during which a number of Aglipayans converted to Catholicism, as noted in the parish register of Baptisms. The Redemptorists fathers were: RP Patrick Scott, CSsr and RP William Daley, CSsr.

  • RP Ramon Declaro
  • RP Mons. Panfilo Brazil
  • RP Amadeo Escanan - Parroco Auxiliar
  • RP Francisco Celda [note 4]
  • RP Agapito Sumbong
  • RP Quirino Palma, Jr.[note 5][note 6][note 7]
  • RP Elmer Tababa - Parroco Auxiliar [29][30]
  • RP Ramon Sequito - Parroco Auxiliar [note 8]
  • RP Ildefonso Tagamolila - Parroco Auxuliar
  • RP William Villalobos - Parroco Auxiliar [note 9][31]
  • RP Francisco Gabriel - Parroco Auxilar
  • RP Francisco Apologista
  • RP Nicasio Lesondra [note 10]
  • RP Lorenzo Camacho
  • RP Winifredo Losaria [note 11]
  • RP Edgar Palmos


The centuries-old ivory image of Mater Dolorosa belonging to the descendants of Capitan Don Martin Balderas, Gobernadorcillo of Banate in the 19th century. The Dolorosa is one of the centuries-old cultural patrimony icons of Banate, seen only during the Good Friday procession.
The Christian faithful waiting their turn to venerate the Santo Entierro after the Good Friday Procession. Duaw, as it is commonly known in Banate, is one of the customs of Banatenhons during the Semana Santa Celebration.

San Juan Fiesta[edit]

During the 24th of June, every year, the town celebrates the feast of St. John the Baptist. The "Diana," a marching band, wakes the townsfolk early in the morning so as to signigy also that it is the fiesta. Masses are held, in both Roman Catholic and Aglipayan Churches after which, devotees' carry in procession a decorated carroza containing the statue of the Patron saint through the main streets of the town. The townspeople cook typical delicious dishes for the guests to eat and, later in the afternoon, children as well as teenagers go to the plaza to enjoy the fun at the "peryahan" and people throw water to everyone as part of the celebration. During the evening, a "search" for Miss Banate is held in the municipal covered gymnasium. Hundreds of crowds pack up the gym just to cheer and clap for their bets.

Semana Santa Celebration[edit]

Banate has, for centuries, also observed the Holy Week celebration in the traditional Catholic custom. The town boasts of antique ivory religious images, which are only seen displayed during the Easter Triduum celebrations and processions. Both the Roman Catholic and the Aglipayan Communities in this town have preserved the Western and Catholic way of making the memory of the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ alive through the heritage received from the Spaniards, who evangelized the town for centuries. The meditation on the seven last words of Jesus and the re-enactment of his last moments on calvary attract devotees from neighboring towns on Good Fridays.

Kasag Festival[edit]

For over 17 years in the making, Kasag festival came as an offshoot of the Annual Street Dancing Competition as highlight of the Annual Town Fiesta, and the promotion of the town's famed product, the Blue Crabs, through as the Municipality's One Town One Product (OTOP)project.

Previous Street Dancing Competitions were held every 24th day of June, as one of the highlights of the final day of the Annual Town Fiesta honoring and thanking God through the intercession of St. John the Baptist for the fruitful year spent. However, the activities meant at integrating Kasag Festival with the Feast of St. John the Baptist proved to be such a tedious endeavor for Banatenhons, requiring much of their time and effort. Most often, this results to distractions, if not deviations, from the original essence and spirit of the religious fiesta which is about the devotion to St. John the Baptist and thanksgiving to the Almighty God.

With the implementation of the DTI's One Town One Product (OTOP), Banate identified Kasag (Blue Crab) as the prevalent and flourishing fishery based industry thus making it Banate's OTOP. Promoting the new product and incorporating the product with the festival was conceptualized by the people in charge of OTOP.

With positive response from the Local Chief Executive, all systems go for the First Kasag Festival Celebration; with "young blood" from the newly elected public officials and the desire to promote Banate's One Town One Product as well as Banate's Tourism Development the First Kasag Festival came into celebration on December 2007.

Food Courts of various mouth-watering and native delicacies were there to give justice to the ever-craving and discriminating taste of Ilonggos. A nightly Singing contest to entertain and showcase the singing prowess of Banatenhons was staged. Daily entertaining activities like Laro ng Lahi (old Filipino games), Basketball Tournament and search for Mutya sang Kasag were organized topped by the eagerly anticipated all new Street Dancing Competition based on the idea of Kasag's preservation for future generation and Kasag's nature and thanksgiving to the bountiful season of fishing.

Participation in Other Festivals[edit]

Selected Kasag performers regularly compete in other festivals. Banate is represented by Tribu Kasag in the Kasadyahan portion of the Dinagyang Festival every January in Iloilo City. The Kasag festival also competes in the Aliwan Fiesta held every April in Metro Manila. Both Tribu Kasag and the Kasag Festival have won several awards, including the Kasadyahan championship trophy in 2009[32] and 2010,[33] and the second runner-up trophy at the Aliwan Fiesta in 2010.[34]

Nota Bene: History of "Tribu Kasag" and its antecedent Tribes.[35]

Since 1987, Banate has participated the well-known Kasadyahan Festival which takes place before the Iloilo City's Dinagyang Festival. Tribu Kasway has represented the town from the year 1987 to 1993. After then, from 1995 to 1999, the town changed the group's name to Tribu Hugyaw. They won 2nd Place in 1999. Tribu Panagat, the newly adapted name, was Kasadyan Festival's winning groups in the year 2000. It continued to represent the town of Banate until 2003. From 2004 to 2005, the name "Tribu Hugyaw" was re-adapted by the group.

Later and until the present, "Tribu Kasag" represents Banate at the Dinagyang Festival as well as at other festivals in the Province of Iloilo and national competitions of the same kind. This current "cultural ambassadors of Banate" are known for their merry and lively dance which depicts the townpeople's livelihood as fishermen, and the town's famed product: "Kasag" or crab(s).

Awards(of Tribu Kasag):

  • Kasadyahan Competition 2008 - 1st Runner-up, Best in Demonstration, Best in Choreography.
  • Kasadyahan Competition 2009 - Grand Champion, Best in Production Design, Best in Choreography, Best in Performance.
  • Aliwan Festival 2009 (National Competition)- 2nd Place.[36]
  • Kasadyahan Competition 2010 - Grand Champion, Best in Performance, Best in Choreography, Best in Music, Best in Costume.

Annual AD3 Karera de Paraw & Pinta Layag Comnpetition[edit]

A mixture of art, entertainment and skills enhancement: that is Banate's Karera de Paraw.

Held every Easter Sunday of the year, the Karera de Paraw is a sailboat racing competition participated by Banatenhon fisher folks. It is a four-day activity, which includes the Pinta Layag (sail painting competition involving the out of school youths), Mutya sang Paraw (a beauty pageant competition), Rakustik (an acoustical jam competition), and capped by the Karera de Paraw on the fourth and final day.

It aims to help boost Banate tourism together with Kasag Festival, to encourage artistic ability of Banatenhon youth through the sail painting competition, and to give a good and fun-filled break for the fisherfolks while aiming to bag home prizes.

Originally conceived and financed by Alfonso "Nonong" Delicana III, the Annual AD3 Karera de Paraw & Pinta Layag competition is now on its 4th year. However, the expanding scope and number of activities of the event encourages at this point the involvement and participation also of supporters in and outside Banate. Organizers would now welcome donations for the activities of the coming year.

Civil Heads of Government[edit]

Record found in the National Archives in Manila showing the election of Don Tomas Juanico as Gobernadorcillo of Banate, whose name is written on the 17th line from the bottom.

Gobernadorcillos of Banate since 1837[edit]

  • Felix Baviera (1837)[12]
  • Alfonso Arroyo
  • Eustaquio Fuentes
  • Apolinario Juanico
  • Pasqual Baylon (1844–45)[37]
  • Ricardo Baban
  • Tomas Juanico (1855–56)[38]
  • Apolinario Arroyo
  • Mariano Fuentes
  • Martin Balderas
  • Nepomuceno Fuentes
  • Mateo Baban
  • Julian Bactung
  • Sotero Fuentes (1889–91)[39]
  • Feliciano Espinosa
  • Ciriaco Fuentes (1898–1900)[note 12]

Presidents elected for Banate during the American regime[edit]

The local political leaders of the town during the American Regime were the following:

  • Eugenio Badilla (1901–03)
  • Mauricio Tupas (1903–05)
  • Florencio Villaluz (1905–07)
  • Victorio Vargas (1907–09)
  • Juanito Balleza (1910–12)
  • Alejandro Baban (acting/appointed–1918)
  • Felix Tarrosa (acting/appointed–1918)
  • Elpidio Padilla (1918–20)
  • Fernando Banaria(1921–23)
  • Elpidio Baylen (1924–26)
  • Paulo Badilla (1927–29)
  • Fortunato Perez (1930–32)

Mayors of Banate during the U.S. commonwealth government.[edit]

  • Manuel Bacabac (1933–35)
  • Benjamin Buyco (1936–39), during whose term Anilao was separated from Banate. Afterwards, Benjamin Buyco also became the first Mayor of Anilao.
  • Paulo Badilla (1939–40)

Mayors of Banate during the Japanese occupation and after the liberation[edit]

  • Exequiel Palec (1941)
  • Simeon Balladares (1941–liberation)
  • Exequiel Palec (liberation–1947)[note 13]

Mayors of Banate during the time of the republic[edit]

Banate Municipal Hall
  • Exequiel Palec (1948–51)
  • Jose Babayo (1952–55)
  • Nicolas Tarrosa (1955–59)
  • Exequiel Palec (1959–63)
  • Marcelino Bacabac (1964–67)
  • Antonio T. Seyan (1968–82)
  • Leonardo A. Cabangal (1982–86)
  • Jonathan V. Sanico (1986–88)[note 14]
  • Jonathan V. Sanico (1988–92)
  • Mayor Vicente V. Bacos (1992–01)
  • Carlos O. Cabangal, Jr. (2001–30 June 2010)
  • Renerose B. Caborubias (1 July 2010–13 May 2013)[note 15]
  • Carlos O. Cabangal, Jr. (13 May 2013–present)


  1. ^ The logical location of "Sinabaan" would be what is now Barotac Viejo. The fact that this town had a history of being attached to Banate, also during the American period, as well as its proximity to Banate support to this theory. Besides, Fr. Murillo Velarde's 1734 Map shows the name "Banate Viejo" extending also over areas where the present Barotac Viejo is located. Another possibility could be San Rafael or San Enrique. However, in Banate's history, there seems to be no reference to this old town's close interaction during the previous centuries with the other two new towns in Iloilo.
  2. ^ After the World War II, significant renovations and repairs of the Church were made possible through the efforts of several parish priests, like Rt. Rev. Mons. Panfilo T. Brazil, H.P., J.C.D., and Rev. Fr. Quirino Palma, Jr., who succeeded to complete the roof project in 1996. The Bell tower on the right was constructed by Fr. Celda in 1975; and the bigger one on the left, by Rev. Fr. (Col.) Nicasio Lisondra (former Chief of the Philippine Army Chaplains, who became acting parish priest of Banate from 2000–2002) and by the current pastor, Fr. Winifredo H. Losaria, who also led the Banatenhons in building the present parish rectory.
  3. ^ This section was transferred from what was before the introductory part for the section about the Presidents of Banate during the American Regime.
  4. ^ The free-standing belfry on the right of the Church façade was constructed during the time of Fr. Celda, through the contribution of parishioners and of their relatives working in other cities in the Philippines and abroad.
  5. ^ Fr. Palma was known in Bnate for his active involvement in the Neocatechumenal Way and has known and worked with Kiko Argüello and other priests in the Archdiocese of Jaro in establishing the first Communities of this movement in the Philippines. The Neocatechumenal Communities in Banate were among the first three in the Philippines. They trace their roots in the Parish of Santa Ana in Molo (Iloilo City), which was founded by Argüello himself in the early 1980s. The other parish which has the second oldest Community in the Philippines is the Sto. Niño Parish of Arevalo, Iloilo City.
  6. ^ Fr. Palma is also remembered for his tireless work of encouraging the parishioners (of this once sleepy parish) at taking more active roles in the life of the Church. He was the first parish priest to have introduced a Parish Pastoral Council in this town. He also labored toward the renovation of the Church, including the replacement of the old roof with the new one with steel trusses, while sacrificing and choosing to live in an old rectory.
  7. ^ Fr. Palma celebrated his Silver Sacerdotal Anniversary in Banate in 1987. Twenty-five years later, while already assigned in another parish, he returned to Banate to celebrate his Golden Sacerdotal Anniversary, which was participated enthusiastically by his devoted friends and former parishioners, who contributed food and expenses in order to make this special occasion a memorable one, and in order to express their gratitude and love for Fr. Palma.
  8. ^ Fr. Sequito was known in Banate for his active apostolate in the Charismatic movement. Later in his ministry, he founded a group of lay evangelists, which paved way to the establishment of "Diyos Gugma" - a popular lay apostolate in the Archdiocese of Jaro, which is engaged in spiritual healing.
  9. ^ Fr. Villalobos later joined the military service of a Chaplain in the Philippine Army.
  10. ^ Rev. Fr. Nicasio Lisondra spent most of his life as a military chaplain. He retired in 1996 with the rank of Colonel, serving as the Chief Chaplain of the Philippine Army. His retirement years was spent as parish priest of Banate.
  11. ^ The current concrete rectory was completed during the time of Fr. Losaria. Generous contributions from parishioners and their families poured in, also for the construction of the concrete fence of the Church property.
  12. ^ There was no agreement among sources as to who was the last Gobernadorcillo of Banate. Some say, the last Gobernadorcillo was Feliciano Espinosa. Others would say that it was Ciriaco Fuentes who was known to the inhabitants as Capitan Takong. However, no extant official records has been found so far to support these claims since the municipal archives was burnt by the Japanese soldiers during their occupation of the town in World War II. The contention in favor of Ciriaco Fuentes was drawn from the fact that when the Revolution for Independence broke out in 1898, Ciriaco Fuentes became the first local President. Shortly after, the town became part of the United States territory (1900) when the American soldiers arrived under the command of Commander Brunnel to establish the American Regime.
  13. ^ During the outbreak of World War II, the Provincial Governor of Iloilo, Tomas Confesor, appointed Simeon Balladares as Mayor. Consequently, Exequiel Palec was impeded to govern. However, he resumed his office as Mayor after the War.
  14. ^ On November 6, 1986, after the EDSA I Revolution, President Corazon C. Aquino appointed Jonathan V. Sanico as Mayor of Banate.
  15. ^ Caborubias is the first female Mayor of Banate.


  1. ^ "Municipalities". Quezon City, Philippines: Department of the Interior and Local Government. Archived from the original on January 25, 2013. Retrieved February 25, 2013. 
  2. ^ "Province: Iloilo". PSGC Interactive. Quezon City, Philippines: Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved 12 November 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c d Census of Population (2015). "Region VI (Western Visayas)". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. PSA. Retrieved 20 June 2016. 
  4. ^ Cf, Sebastian Sta. Cruz Serag, The Remnants of the Great Ilonggo Nation, Sampaloc, Manila: Rex Book Store, 1997, p. 21.
  5. ^ a b Ilongo, Vic. "Iloilo History Part 1". Research Center for Iloilo. 
  6. ^ a b "También fundó convento el Padre Fray Martin de Rada en Araut- que ahora se llama el convento de Dumangas- con la advocación de nuestro Padre San Agustín...Está fundado este pueblo casi a los fines del río de Halaur, que naciendo en unos altos montes en el centro de esta isla (Panay)...Es el pueblo muy hermoso, ameno y muy lleno de palmares de cocos. Antiguamente era el emporio y corte de la más lucida nobleza de toda aquella isla...Hay en dicho pueblo algunos buenos cristianos...Las visitas que tiene son ocho: tres en el monte, dos en el río y tres en el mar...Las que están al mar son: Santa Ana de Anilao, San Juan Evangelista de Bobog, y otra visita más en el monte, entitulada Santa Rosa de Hapitan." Gaspar de San Agustin, O.S.A., Conquistas de las Islas Filipinas (1565–1615), Manuel Merino, O.S.A., ed., Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas: Madrid 1975, pp. 374-375.
  7. ^ Munoz, Paul Michel (2006). Early Kingdoms of the Indonesian Archipelago and the Malay Peninsula. Singapore: Editions Didier Millet. p. 171. ISBN 981-4155-67-5. 
  8. ^ Cf. Sub-section "The Residencia and The Visita" of the History of the Philippines (1521–1898).
  9. ^ a b c Cf. Fr. Juan Fernandez, O.S.A, Monografias de los pueblos de la isla de Panay in Monographs of the Towns of Panay, Jose Espinosa, Jr., trans., Iloilo City: University of San Augustine, 2006, pp. ---.
  10. ^ Gaspar de San Agustin, O.S.A., Conquistas de las Islas Filipinas (1565–1615), Manuel Merino, O.S.A., ed., Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas: Madrid 1975, pp. 374-375.
  11. ^ The ancient towns and their visitas explicitly illustrated in the map are: Arevalo, Iloilo (extends to Pavia Santa Barbara , Cabatuan and Maasin), Molo, Jaro ( stretching to current Lapaz and Leganes), Guimbal, Tigbaun, Oton, Dumangas, Anilao, Banate, Barotac (Nuevo), Ajuy Dulano, Laglag, Pase, Alimodian. Cf. Inset for Fr. Murillo Velarde's 1734 Map.
  12. ^ a b c d e Cf. Fr. Juan Fernandez, O.S.A, Monografias de los pueblos de la isla de Panay in Monographs of the Towns of Panay, Iloilo City: University of San Augustine, 2006, pp. 64 and 158.
  13. ^ a b Manuel Buzeta y Felipe Bravo, Diccionario geografico, estadistico, historico de las Islas Filipinas, Vol. I, p. 339.
  14. ^ Manuel Buzeta y Felipe Bravo, Diccionario geografico, estadistico, historico de las Islas Filipinas, Madrid: 1850, Vol. I, p. 339.
  15. ^ Fr. Eustaqiuo Torés took the Augustinian habit in Valladolid in 1861 and professed his simple vows in 1862. He went to the Philippines in 1868 while still a deacon. He exercised his ministry in Iloilo in the curates of Banate and Baotac Nuevo in 1870 and 1882 respectively. Fr. Torés constructed in these towns the Churches of stone bases and of wood. He died in Barotac Nuevo on May 4, 1888. Cf. Elviro J. Perez, Catalogo Bio-Bibliografico de los religiosos Agustinianos de la Provincia del Santissimo Nombre de Jesus de las Islas Filipinas, Manila: Colegio de Sto. Tomas, 1901, p. 535.
  16. ^ Fr. Manuel Santos was born in Burgos in 1853 and professed his vows in the college of Valladolid in 1870. He was parish associate in Sta. Barbara in 1878 and became parish priest of Banate in 1882. He was constructing the parish rectory of Banate from 1883 until his death on June 29, 1889. Cf. Elviro J. Perez, Catalogo Bio-Bibliografico de los religiosos Agustinianos de la Provincia del Santissimo Nombre de Jesus de las Islas Filipinas, Manila: Colegio de Sto. Tomas, 1901, p. 595-596.
  17. ^ Galente, Pedro G., O.S.A., Angels in Stone: Augustinian Churches in the Philippines, Manila: San Augustine Museum, 1996, p----
  18. ^ Cf. R. Morales Maza, The Augustinians in Panay, Iloilo City: University of San Augustine, 1987, p. 332.
  19. ^ Velmonte, Jose Manuel (1998). "Ethnicity and the Revolution in Panay". Kasarinlan. 14 (1). Archived from the original on September 21, 2013 – via Center for Integrative and Development Studies - University of the Philippines. 
  20. ^ Cf. Elviro J. Perez, Catalogo Bio-Bibliografico de los religiosos Agustinianos de la Provincia del Santissimo Nombre de Jesus de las Islas Filipinas, Manila: Colegio de Sto. Tomas, 1901, p. 595-596.
  21. ^ Folio 886/11, Francisco Jalandoni describes formation of the guerrilla bands in Iloilo Province, July 1, 1900, Selected Documents, Philippine Revolutionary Records (PRR), National Library.
  22. ^ a b Also Cf. Jose Manuel Velmonte, Ethnicity and the Revolution in Panay in Kasarinlan, Volume 14 No. 1. The author is an Associate Researcher at the UP-Center for Integrative and Development Studies.
  23. ^ Cf. Federico A. Oquindo and Rafael R. Oquindo, History of the Philippine Telecommunications Industry. N. B. Federico A. Oquindo was a senior executive assistant and head of the Public Information Office of the National Telecommunications Commission, prior to his retirement from Philippine Gevernment Service in 1998. (Also cf.
  24. ^ Cf. Federico A. Oquindo and Rafael R. Oquindo, History of the Philippine Telecommunications Industry. (Also cf.
  25. ^ Census of Population and Housing (2010). "Region VI (Western Visayas)". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. NSO. Retrieved 29 June 2016. 
  26. ^ Manila Bulletin Online
  27. ^ "Proposed Trans-Visayas Friendship Bridges Get RDC 6 Nod". The News Today. December 11, 2006. Retrieved June 6, 2012. 
  28. ^ Cf. St. John the Baptist Roman Catholic Church, Banate, Iloilo (Philippines), Canonical Books (Baptismal Register, Registry of Marriage) covering the years 1910 to 1940 and 1945 to 2015.
  29. ^ Rev. Tababa was later promoted to the rank of Papal Chaplain with the title of "Monsignor".
  30. ^ Papal Chaplain (P.C.) – Invested Filipino Monsignori.
  31. ^ Military Ordinariate of the Philippines in Claretian Communications Foundation, Inc.
  32. ^ Garcia, Jennifer (January 26, 2009). "Dinagyang Festival 2009 Draws Thousands of Tourists". ABS-CBN. Retrieved August 22, 2011. 
  33. ^ Jumayao, Glen. "Snapshots of Kasadyahan 2010". The News Today. Retrieved August 22, 2011. 
  34. ^ Mendoza, E. (April 26, 2010). "Dinagyang Festival Emerged as the Aliwan 2010 Grand Champion". Gigs Ilonggo. Retrieved August 22, 2011. 
  35. ^ "Explore Iloilo Photoblog". Retrieved June 6, 2012. 
  36. ^ "Aliwan 2009 - Tribu Kasag (Banate, Iloilo)". YouTube. 26 April 2009. Retrieved June 6, 2012. 
  37. ^ Cf. Official election document for the year 1844–45 found in the National Archives entitled: Relacion nominal de los Gobernadorcillos, tenientes, juezes, y alguaciles del año corriente con exposicion de sus Pueblos, p. 8. In the said document the other town officials during the incumbency of Don Pascual Baylon were as follows: Julian Fuentes- Primer Teniente, Victoriano Bonifacio- Segundo Teniente, Ynesanio Domingo- Primer Juez, Ruberto Cayetano- Segundo Juez, Lucas Espinosa- Primer Alguacil, Juan Mateo- Segundo Alguacil, Juan Ygnacio- Tercer Alguacil.
  38. ^ Cf. Official election document for the year 1855 found in the National Archives entitled: Relacion nominal de los Gobernadorcillos y demas Ministros de Justicia que quedan en ejercicio en el año coriente y el entrante de 1856 y con titulos del Superior Gobierno in Elecciones de Gobernadorcillos: Iloilo (1838–1893), p. 51. In the said document the other town officials during the incumbency of Capitan Don Tomas Juanico were as follows: D. Alfonso Arroyo- Primer Teniente, Pablo Becenra- Segundo Teniente y Juez mayor de Ganados, Sabino Apacible- Juez mayor de Sementeras, Claudio Juanico- Juez de Policia, Fabiano Baquisal- Primer Alguacil, Tobias Bacabac- Segundo Alguacil, Luis Banbeno-Tercer Alguacil.
  39. ^ Cf. official election document for the year 1889 found in the National Archives entitled: Relacion nominal de los Gobernadorcillos y demas Ministros de Justicia nombrados por este Gobierno en los pueblos de este Distrito (Yloilo) para el ejercicio del bienio economico de 1889 al 90 y del 90 al 91 in Elecciones de Gobernadorcillos: Iloilo (1838–1893), p. 269. In the said document the other town officials during the incumbency of Sotero Juanico were as follows: Julian Bactin- Primer Teniente, Gregorio Arroyo- Segundo Teniente, Guillermo Juanico- Juez mayor de Sementeros, Faustino Velasco- Juez de Policia, Tomas Caliston- Juez de Ganados, Simeon Babac- Primer Alguacil, Faustino Gipay- Segundo Alguacil, Vicente Babayen-on- Tercer Alguacil.

External links[edit]