Roxas City City Charter Day, also called Kaadlawan sang Roxas City, is celebrated in Roxas City, Capiz, Philippines every May 12. It commemorates the passage of Republic Act No. 603 in 1951 that ushered in its cityhood status.
History of Roxas City
Roxas City was called Capiz. When the Spaniards landed in the island of Panay in the 16th century, they made the town of Bamban (later renamed Panay) the capital. They moved the capital to Capiz after discovering its suitable location as a port to moor their fleet. In 1590, it became a shipyard of Spanish ships.
Starting in 1571, it became part of Iloilo and by 1746, a politico-military government was set up that effectively separated Capiz as an independent territory.
The Augustinians founded the church that was a visita of Panay in 1693. The colonial-era stone church, better known as the Roxas Cathedral or Immaculate Conception Metropolitan Cathedral was built in 1877.
Its coasts however were frequently subjected to vicious Moro raids that brought misery and destruction. To defend its lands, forts in Baybay beach were built in the 18th century.
Towards the end of the Spanish colonization, Filipino revolutionaries led by General Ananias Diokno landed in Capiz. It was by the shoreline of Baybay that Governor Juan Herrero submitted his surrender to General Diokno on August 31, 1898.
A bill authored by representative Ramon Arnaldo was introduced that proposed the cityhood of Capiz, which was also known as El Pueblo de Capiz. The municipality of Capiz became a city by virtue of Republic Act No. 603, otherwise known as the Charter of the City of Roxas, that was approved by President Elpidio Quirino on April 11, 1951.
The law also renamed it Roxas City in honor of President Manuel Acuña Roxas, one of the city’s most famous citizens and the fifth president of the Philippines. The president was also honored with a municipality named after him in 1967 (see President Roxas Founding Anniversary).
The date of the yearly charter day anniversary celebration is every May 12th. Such observance was made according to Executive Order No. 438 that was signed by Quirino on May 3, 1951.
According to the order, the 12th of May is the “date of the organization of the Government of the City of Roxas and qualification of the city mayor and the members of the municipal board appointed in accordance with the provisions of said Republic Act No. 603.”
Roxas City Charter Day Activities
The celebration of Roxas City Charter Day can be a one-day affair or can be as long as three days. In 2007, the one-day activity saw thanksgiving mass and cityhood commemorative program organized by the local government unit.
In 2012, there were several activities including food fair that highlights oysters, cook fest, and fireworks display. In 2021, there was a flag-raising and wreath-laying at the monument of President Manuel Roxas by city officials.
In 2023, its calendar’s from May 8 to May 13 and slated activities are livelihood fair, business fair, parade, sports, and concerts.
- Alex A. Lumaque. Roxas City celebrates 61st charter day. The Philippine Star. May 12, 2012. Retrieved May 1, 2023
- Roxas. Britannica. Retrieved May 1, 2023
- Roxas City. City Government of Roxas. Retrieved May 1, 2023
- Executive Order No. 438, s. 1951. Official Gazette. Retrieved May 1, 2023
- Republic Act No. 603. Chan Robles. Retrieved May 1, 2023
- The City of Roxas. Capiz Tourism and Cultural Affairs. November 25, 2019. Retrieved May 1, 2023
- Places to visit in Capiz. Provincial Government of Capiz. Retrieved May 1, 2023
- A brief history. City Government of Roxas. Retrieved Ma 1, 2023
- Ananias Diokno. National historical Commission of the Philippines.
- Simple celebration set for Roxas City charter day. The News Today. May 11, 2007. Retrieved May 1, 2023
- Roxas City celebrates 70th charter anniv. Daily Guardian. May 12, 2021. Retrieved May 1, 2023