San Jose de Buenavista, Antique

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San Jose de Buenavista
San Jose
Antique Capitol
Antique Capitol
Map of Antique with San Jose highlighted
Location within Antique province
San Jose de Buenavista is located in Philippines
San Jose de Buenavista
San Jose de Buenavista
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 10°45′N 121°57′E / 10.75°N 121.95°E / 10.75; 121.95Coordinates: 10°45′N 121°57′E / 10.75°N 121.95°E / 10.75; 121.95
Country Philippines
Region Western Visayas (Region VI)
Province Antique
District Lone district
Founded 1733
Barangays 28 (see Barangays)
 • Type Sangguniang Bayan
 • Mayor Rony L. Molina
 • Vice Mayor Elmer C. Untaran
 • Total 48.56 km2 (18.75 sq mi)
Population (2015 census)[3]
 • Total 62,534
 • Density 1,300/km2 (3,300/sq mi)
 • Voter(2016)[4] 31,148
Time zone PST (UTC+8)
ZIP code 5700
IDD:area code +63 (0)36
Income class 1st class
PSGC 060613000

San Jose de Buenavista, officially the Municipality of San Jose de Buenavista (Karay-a: Banwa kang San Jose de Buenavista; Hiligaynon: Banwa sang San Jose de Buenavista; Filipino: Bayan ng San Jose de Buenavista) or better known simply as San Jose, is a municipality in the province of Antique in the Western Visayas (Region VI) of the Philippines, serving as the provincial capital. The population was 62,534 at the 2015 census.[3] In the 2016 electoral roll, it had 31,148 registered voters.[4]

San Jose is 97 kilometres (60 mi) from Iloilo City, 182 kilometres (113 mi) from Kalibo, and 213 kilometres (132 mi) from Roxas City.


In 1250, ten Bornean Datus (Chiefs), their wives, children, warriors, servants, and followers left Borneo and the oppression of Sultan Makatunao. In December, they landed at Siriwagan, San Joaquin, in the province of Iloilo. After interrogating two men who were fishing there, they were told that the leader, Chieftain Marikudo and his wife, Maniwangtiwan were living nearby in Sinugbo. The Datus went downstream and found the Ati ruler. Negotiations commenced and the "Barter of Panay" was made. Panay was bought in exchange for a gold salakot (Chieftain's rattan hat trimmed in gold) for Marikudo and a long, gold necklace for Maniwangtiwan. The other three datus sailed northward to Luzon, leaving seven datus under the leadership of Datu Sumakwel.

Multiple settlements were established in Malandog, later including Tubigon, which is now San Jose de Buenavista, and a settlement was established in Naganya (Egana). Barangay Odiong served as a dock for boats of Malays coming from Malandog to the eastern part of Hantique (Antique). To signal boats stopping or arriving, the port authorities used budyong or horns made from a carabao’s (water buffalo) horns. The blowing of budyong took place at Telegrapo in Tubigon as this spot served as the signal and control tower. The Hantique rivers at that time were navigable and the main way of traveling.

Spanish colonizers came to Hantique in 1581. With them came Augustinian friars that Christianized the inhabitants who lived in Hamtic. They taught the people in Christian ways and built churches in Maybato, Asluman, Naganya (Egana) and Bugason (Bugasong).

There was no place called San Jose de Buenavista at that time. It was called Tubigon because it was under water. Tubigon was still a part of Hamtic and a visita of the church of Hamtic, meaning it had no parish priest of its own. The people went to Maybato to hear mass. The church was a big stone edifice, which gave the name "Maybato" to its vicinity. Moro pirates frequently plundered Hamtic and went as far as Maybato. These Moro pirates burned the church and took away the huge bell in the belfry. They had not gone far from Mala-iba when their boat sank and in colloquial Spanish, Mala-iba means, "it had gone away." In 1733, San Jose, formerly called “Tubigon” was founded, and in 1790, it acquired its land title through land grants issued by Governor-General Carlos Benequer de Marquina. Afterwards, it became a parish having its first curra paroco or parish priest, Fr. Manuel Ibañes.

About two hundred years ago, the site now occupied by San Jose de Buenavista was dense jungle and a favorite landing place of the Moro pirates who raided the countryside. During the invasions of 1743, the Moros were reported to have penetrated as far as Catung-agan, but all were killed with the exception of three by the famous Manglo of Igmatongtong (Bugasong). The year 1776 saw a return of the Moros to Bugasong. In 1779, Badyangan (Patnongon) was the scene of their depredations, while Barbaza suffered in their hands in 1782 and 1787. The inhabitants gradually moved away from the coastal areas and settled in the mountains. Only two towns remained—Bugasong (founded in 1743) and Antike (founded in 1745) both belonging to the province of Oton. The Moro pirates landed in the neighborhood of Madrangca and from there, penetrated into the other regions of the province. It became clear that one of the best ways to stop them from landing at the point, was to cut down the jungle and prevent their surreptitious landings and invasions of the areas. Seven men began this hazardous undertaking in Malai-ba near the San Juan Spring under the leadership of Augustin Sumandi. In the year 1790, the sitio of Mala-iba changed its name into San Jose, not only to honor its patron saint but also to perpetuate the name of Augustin Sumandi's son, Jose. In 1802, upon petition of the people, San Jose de Buenavista became the capital of the province of Antique and Augustin Sumandi was appointed as its first Gobernadorcillo.

In 1872, San Jose became a town. Then in 1902, it became the capital of the Province of Antique. Government officials and church dignitaries came by boat to attend the ceremonies. Impressed by the marvelous view of the town, they added to the name San Jose, the word “de Buenavista” (meaning beautiful view), the town's current name.


San Jose de Buenavista is located at 10°45′N 121°57′E / 10.75°N 121.95°E / 10.75; 121.95.

According to the Philippine Statistics Authority, the municipality has a land area of 48.56 square kilometres (18.75 sq mi)[2] constituting 1.78% of the 2,729.17-square-kilometre- (1,053.74 sq mi) total area of Antique.


San Jose de Buenavista is politically subdivided into 28 barangays.[5]

PSGC Barangay Population ±% p.a.
2015[3] 2010[6]
060613001 Atabay 3.6% 2,266 2,164 0.88%
060613002 Badiang 4.8% 2,995 2,638 2.45%
060613003 Barangay 1 (Poblacion) 4.5% 2,808 2,762 0.31%
060613004 Barangay 2 (Poblacion) 2.9% 1,804 1,867 −0.65%
060613005 Barangay 3 (Poblacion) 5.4% 3,384 3,289 0.54%
060613006 Barangay 4 (Poblacion) 4.7% 2,943 2,847 0.63%
060613007 Barangay 5 (Poblacion) 1.5% 969 1,048 −1.48%
060613008 Barangay 6 (Poblacion) 0.8% 489 482 0.27%
060613009 Barangay 7 (Poblacion) 0.6% 395 398 −0.14%
060613010 Barangay 8 (Poblacion) 7.5% 4,689 4,671 0.07%
060613011 Bariri 1.9% 1,209 1,130 1.29%
060613014 Bugarot (Catungan-Bugarot) 1.5% 946 952 −0.12%
060613015 Cansadan (Cansadan-Tubudan) 3.2% 1,978 1,380 7.09%
060613016 Durog 0.8% 496 280 11.50%
060613017 Funda-Dalipe 9.4% 5,879 5,498 1.28%
060613018 Igbonglo 2.2% 1,401 1,302 1.41%
060613019 Inabasan 2.2% 1,382 1,357 0.35%
060613020 Madrangca 4.2% 2,630 2,252 3.00%
060613021 Magcalon 1.8% 1,132 1,074 1.01%
060613022 Malaiba 2.7% 1,712 1,624 1.01%
060613023 Maybato Norte 6.7% 4,219 3,716 2.45%
060613024 Maybato Sur 3.5% 2,185 1,655 5.43%
060613025 Mojon 2.4% 1,517 1,438 1.02%
060613026 Pantao 1.2% 756 752 0.10%
060613027 San Angel 3.9% 2,468 2,310 1.27%
060613028 San Fernando 4.3% 2,708 2,283 3.30%
060613029 San Pedro 9.2% 5,735 5,300 1.51%
060613030 Supa 2.3% 1,439 1,378 0.83%
Total 62,534 57,847 1.49%


Population census of
San Jose de Buenavista
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1903 19,819 —    
1918 21,221 +0.46%
1939 29,140 +1.52%
1948 34,639 +1.94%
1960 17,124 −5.70%
1970 23,384 +3.16%
1975 24,730 +1.13%
1980 30,266 +4.12%
1990 40,267 +2.90%
1995 42,927 +1.21%
2000 48,261 +2.54%
2007 54,871 +1.79%
2010 57,847 +1.94%
2015 62,534 +1.49%
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority[3][6][7][8]

In the 2015 census, San Jose de Buenavista had a population of 62,534.[3] The population density was 1,300 inhabitants per square kilometre (3,400/sq mi).

In the 2016 electoral roll, it had 31,148 registered voters.[4]


Kinaray-a is the spoken language of the municipality. Kinaray-a came from the word "iraya" equivalent to "ilaya" in Tagalog, which refers to a group of people residing in the mountain areas of the province. Speakers from San Pedro and neighboring barangays have a different intonation from speakers of the Poblacion and the rest of the municipality. There are also some words of the former that differs from the latter. People from San Pedro call the calamansi fruit as "Bis-bis", while people from the Poblacion goes by "Calamansi" or "Limon". Hiligaynon is spoken as a second language of the municipality.


San Jose is the see of the Roman Catholic Diocese of San Jose de Antique.


Before the creation of San Jose de Buenavista into what it is today, it had three neighboring pueblos, Guintas, Antike and San Pedro. These pueblos, each under the Presidente Municipal, served for one year as follows:

  • Ceriaco Erena, San Jose de Buenavista (1901–1902)
  • Ramon Javier, Antike (1901–1902)
  • Nemesio Tinga, Guintas (1901–1902)
  • Emigdio Moscoso, San Pedro (1901–1902)
  • Anselmo Alicante, San Jose de Buenavista (1901–1902)
  • Feliciano Mijillano, Antike (1902–1903)
  • Apolonio Magbanua, Guintas (1902–1903)
  • Agapito Capistrano, San Pedro (1902–1903)

When the pueblos were organized into one pueblo, San Jose de Buenavista, the following served as Presidente Municipal:

  • Martin Iglesias (1904–1905)
  • Mariano Autajay (1905–1908)
  • Jacinto Peña (1908–1910)
  • Sixto Quilino (1910–1912)
  • Vicente Javier (1918–1922)
  • Antonio Ricarze (1919–1922) (He died in office, January 1922 and Jose Iglesias served the unexpired term for the whole year.)
  • Gregorio Esclavilla (1922–1928)
  • Alberto Villavert (1928–1934)
  • Antonio delos Reyes (1934–1937)
  • Silverio Nietes (1938–1951)
  • Julian Pacificador (1952–1954)

In 1954, the title, Presidente Municipal, was changed to Municipal Mayor. When Hamtic was separated from San Jose de Buenavista in 1954, Municipal Mayor Julian Pacificador was transferred to Hamtic and Vice Mayor Delfin Encarnacion took over as Municipal Mayor of San Jose.

  • Severa Panaguiton-Banusing (1956–1963) (Still the first and only female mayor of San Jose de Buenavista)
  • Agerico Villavert (1964–1967)
  • Oscar Salazar (1968–May 7, 1986)

In 1986, the incumbent Municipal Mayor did not finish his term of office when the EDSA Revolution, a peaceful civilian-backed uprising took place and brought President Corazon C. Aquino to power. Major changes were made in the national and local government offices which led to the appointment of an Officer-in Charge, Efren G. Esclavilla from May 8, 1986 to December 1987. Mr. Condrado V. Petinglay, Jr. served as Officer-in-Charge when Efren G. Esclavilla filed his candidacy to run for the mayoral seat. He was elected Municipal mayor for a term of four years from 1988-1992. The national and local elections held in May 1992 brought former Mayor Efren G. Esclavilla to the same mayoralty position.

The 1998 elections brought a new set of local officials under the leadership of incumbent Mayor Fernando Corvera and Vice Mayor Ronnie Molina. The two were reelected in the 2001 elections, where the latter is the current Municipal Mayor.

  • Mayor: Rony Lavega Molina
  • Vice: Nestor Angel Obsiana Salazar
  • SB Members:
  • Elmer Cerdeña Untaran
  • Danilo Lavega Nebit
  • Jake Delas Llagas Pacificador
  • Ma. Angeles Pefianco Azurin
  • Nestor Altares Israel
  • Fred Del Rosario Hiponia
  • Claro Catalino Baldevia
  • Frank Cadiena Moscoso


The Evelio Javier Freedom Park

The celebration of the historical Binirayan Festival is conducted the last week of December. It's a theatrical presentation, commemorating the landing of the ten Malay datus in Malandog, Hamtic, and Antique in the middle of the 13th century to found the first Malayan settlement or barangay in this country. Started in 1971, it now attracts the attention of Filipino and foreigners alike.

Old and new buildings dot the town: the Old Capitol Building; Evelio B. Javier Memorabilia (New Capitol); ADF Handicrafts; Azurin Mansion and Piedra's Restaurant; La Granja and Binirayan Hills; and the San Pedro Old Church.

EBJ Freedom Park is located in front of the Antique Provincial Capitol building in San Jose de Buenavista. The Sangguiang Panlalawigan of Antique on behalf of the entire Antiqueño citizenry officially christens the place Evelio B. Javier Freedom Park. In the park is a marker which reads " A fitting tribute to a man who has done so much, not only for the people of Antique, but the entire Filipino nation, in pursuit of justice, freedom, dignity, democracy and peace". The marker also designates the spot where the late Gov. Evelio B. Javier was shot by an unknown assassin on February 11, 1986. Facts about his death are incomplete.

Camp Autajay sometimes called Piña beach, is five kilometers away from San Jose. It is a 10-hectare lot located along the beach, with an orchard of narra and mahogany trees, nipa sheds, benches and cottages. The place is ideal for camping, or live-in seminars for conferences. One can go swimming, light bonfires, climb trees, pick fruits or play during leisure hours.

San Jose celebrates its religious fiesta on May 1 to honor its patron saint, Saint Joseph the Worker.


  1. ^ "Municipality". Quezon City, Philippines: Department of the Interior and Local Government. Retrieved 31 May 2013. 
  2. ^ a b "Province: Antique". PSGC Interactive. Quezon City, Philippines: Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved 12 November 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Census of Population (2015). "Region VI (Western Visayas)". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. PSA. Retrieved 20 June 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c "2016 National and Local Elections Statistics". Commission on Elections. 2016. 
  5. ^ "Municipal: San Jose de Buenavista, Antique". PSGC Interactive. Quezon City, Philippines: Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved 8 January 2016. 
  6. ^ a b Census of Population and Housing (2010). "Region VI (Western Visayas)". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. NSO. Retrieved 29 June 2016. 
  7. ^ Census of Population (1995, 2000 and 2007). "Region VI (Western Visayas)". Total Population by Province, City and Municipality. NSO. Archived from the original on 24 June 2011. 
  8. ^ "Province of Antique". Municipality Population Data. Local Water Utilities Administration Research Division. Retrieved 17 December 2016. 

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