The Municipality of Tubungan

The town of Tubungan was formally founded in 1768 through the efforts of Tan Mangon in barrio Tin-an which now forms part of the present town site. Settlers came from Nahapay, Guimbal, and the neighboring towns of Leon, Igbaras, and Tigbauan.

In 1769, it was an arrabal (a political unit bigger than a barrio) of Guimbal, and Agustin Mambuti was appointed the first Teniente to represent Tubungan in the Municipal Council.

Tubungan was made again a municipality in 1803 with the appointment of Fernando Paguntalan as its first Captain. However, bandit raids Tubungan which placed the town under constant danger led to the incorporation of Guimbal from 1806 to 1820.

In 1821, when the situation returned to normal, Tubungan once more became independent. Then in 1905, the American Civil Government ordered the fusion of small towns with bigger ones. For the second time, Tubungan became an arrabal of Guimbal and remained as such for 33 years from 1905 to 1938.
The separation of Tubungan from Guimbal came as a direct result of keen political rivalry during the 1937 elections. A Tubunganon candidate in the person of Mr. Miguel Tagamolila won by 12 votes over a Guimbaleñio candidate, Mr. Filemon Palacios. However, through some alleged manipulations, Palacios was officially declared the winner. Feeling aggrieved, the people from Igtuble led by Teniente Donis (Taghap), and from Lanag Norte led by Tan Genton (Francisco) formed an assault group to burn the town of Guimbal. However, they were pacified and conceded to settle their scores through legal means Mr. Miguel Tagamolila filed a protest and there were positive indications that he would come out victorious. To avert political dissension, the then Provincial Governor Tomas Confesor made representations with the President to make Tubungan an independent municipality.

Thus, on May 1, 1938, by Executive Order No. 143 of His Excellency, Manuel Luis Quezon, President of the Philippine Commonwealth, Tubungan was finally reestablished as an independent municipality with Miguel Tagamolila as the First Mayor.

Other town executives that followed were: Domingo Tagaro, Sr., Jose Tabingo, Tomas Tajonera, Vicente Gargaritano, Godofredo Tagamolila, and Amador Tabino, Sr.

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

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