Mt. Nangtud and other land disputes

Last June, the Sanggunian Bayan members of Jamindan have requested the support of the Sanggunian Panlalawigan regarding the Jamindan’s claim of Mt. Nangtud.

The problem stemmed after a member of SP of Antique delivered a privilege speech that questioning the claim of Jamindan because they believed that Mt. Nangtud, according to Vice Mayor Idelfonso Cusay, was theirs after the late Governor Evelio Javier trekked the said mountain in 1977.

Historically, this was the first controversial dispute between the provinces of Antique and Capiz in recent memory. But boundary disputes between municipalities in the province of Capiz took place previously and there are still some which are existing but proper measures to resolve the disputes are not sought by contesting parties.

The best example of land disputes that were settled harmoniously were the cases of the municipality of Sigma and her adjoined Municipalities of Ivisan and Mambusao. These cases took place before the Second World War.

Municipalities of Mambusao and Sigma were once in boundary disputes involving the Barangay Tawog, Sigma. The municipal Mayor of Sigma alleged that the boundary was supposed to be in the creek, a tributary of Mambusao River, which passes through Barrio Mangoso going to Barrio Oyong, which joins the main river.

But the Sigma mayor contended that the proposition of the municipality of Mambusao was not rational since the creek was in a zigzag direction and it would reduce the land area of the municipality of Sigma. The dispute was resolved by Capiz Governor Antonio Habana that he himself went to the place and stand on the Altavas Bridge and pointed the boundary. During the administration of Capiz Governor Jose Cortes Altavas, another boundary dispute had arisen.

Same as the previous governor, Altavas went to the spot where Habana stood with the same procedure and pointed out to a certain mountain called “Boñgon” located on the western part of Barrio Oyong that was the boundary of the two municipalities. Since then, the was no boundary dispute that had arisen between the two municipalities.

The municipalities of Sigma and Ivisan had once a legal case involving Barangay Parian, Sigma. Unfortunately, the issue was brought to court. The municipality of Ivisan claimed that the boundary of Sigma and Ivisan should be in Mi-anay, Sigma.

Hence, Barrio Parian legally belonged to the municipality of Ivisan. But the court had decided in favor of the municipality of Sigma because a stone near Pari-an there was an inscription of the name San Juan, the Patron Saint of the town.

Therefore, Pari-an, remained as one of the 21 barangays of Sigma.

With the issue on Mt. Nangtud, we hope both officials of both Provinces, including the mountaineers and other stakeholders, should remain calm and avoid jousting on social media. We live on the same Island and shared with a similar culture. Let the process resolve the issue amicably. In the end, the truth will come and Mt. Nangtud will be awarded to its rightful owner in due time.*