The Municipality of Banate

The beautiful coastal town which is now known as Banate has a historical background dimmed in obscurity. In fact, according to Victorio Vargas, one time Municipal President and one of the oldest living patriarchs (1935), the town has no recorded history prior to 1805 when Andres Maningo became the first teniente del barrio. At that time, Banate was only a barrio of Barotac Nuevo and being a coastal site, it was presumed that the barrio was founded by fishermen.

In the days of the Spanish Regime, Ricardo Ykalina, who used to keep the historical data of the town during his incumbency as Municipal Treasurer said that Banate was not even considered a barrio at that early date. Historians had a term for it, isita becau se the place was undoubtedly visited by prominent Barotac Nuevo citizens now and then, basically due to its wide stretch of sandy beaches.

Long ago, as it was in those days, Moro pirates in their sailing vintas would appear in the horizon and the inhabitants of the vistas would flee to Barotac Nuevo where a superior number of them could repel the pirates should they dare attack.

With the appointment of Felix Babiera as the first gobernadorcillo in 1837, Banate became a town. The original poblacion was located in what is now known today as Bularan. The Church ground which the town grew, was built near the shore. A stone’s throw from it, to the north, was the town cemetery. For the market place, nipa and bamboo shacks were constructed along the areas.

Included within the territorial jurisdiction of the town were Barotac Viejo and Anilao. Barotac Viejo, however became an independent town on January 1, 1918, as per Executive Order No. 84 of the Governor General.

Source: The League of Municipalities (Iloilo Chapter) | “A Testimonial Program” | Pototan, Iloilo | January 8, 1998


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