The Gobernadorcillo was a public functionary in the Philippines during the Spanish Regime who carried out in a town the combined charge or responsibility as Chief of the civil, economic, and judicial administration.Gobernadorcillo is the is the leader of a town or pueblo(old name). In a coastal town, the Gobernadocillo functioned as a Port Captain. His appointment was done through an exclusive nomination provided by the Spanish law. His term of office lasted for two years. The position of a Gobernadorcillo was honorary and mandatory in order to afford him of those valid exemptions signified in the law. At the end of his biennial term he would enter and would form part of the Principalía, and was entitled to enjoy the honors and preeminence inherent to this state. This Mayor, Justice of Peace, and Port Captain is directly responsible to the Governor of the province in the exercise of his office.
In 1893, the Maura Law was passed with the aim of making the municipal governments in the Philippine Archipelago more effective and autonomous. One of the changes that this law brought about was the reorganization of certain structures of town governments, among which was the changing of the designation of town head from Gobernadorcillo to Capitan Municipal effective 1895.
The election of a Gobernadorcillo was done in secret balloting. It was authorized by a notary and presided over by the provincial chief. The parish priest of the town may be present if he wishes, to express what opinions he may consider fitting, but for no other purpose. The sealed envelops containing the election results in provinces near Manila were sent to superior offices of the government in the capital. From the list of the terna, the Governor General appoints the Gobernadorcillo, taking into consideration the report of the president of the election. In distant territories, the chief of each province appointed the nominee who got the highest vote.
On the day on which the Gobernadorcillo takes his office, his town holds a great celebration [fiestahan]. All eat, drink, smoke, and amuse themselves at the expense of the municipality. The feast is held in the municipal or city hall where he occupies a large and lofty seat, which is adorned by the coat of arms of Spain and with fanciful designs, if his social footing shows a respectable antiquity.
On holy days the town officials go to the Church together in one body. The Principalía and cuadrilleros form in two lines in front of the Gobernadorcillo. They are preceded by the band playing the music as they process towards the Church. In the Church, the Gobernadorcillo occupies a seat in precedence of those of the chiefs or Cabezas de Barangay, who have benches of honor. After the Mass, they usually go to the rectory to pay their respects to the parish priest. Then, they return to the tribunal [i.e., municipal hall or city hall] in the same order, and still accompanied by the band playing a loud double quick march called in Spanish as paso doble.
When the Gobernadorcillo goes out of the street, an alguecil [i.e., police of the period] with a long wand precedes him.
The Gobernadorcillos and officials of justice received the greatest consideration from the Spanish Crown officials. The provincial chiefs were under obligation to show them the honor corresponding to their respective duties. They are allowed to sit in the houses of the provincial chiefs, and in any other places. They were not left to remain standing. It was not permitted for parish priests to treat these officials with less consideration.
The Gobernadorcillos exercised the command of the towns. They were Port Captains in coastal towns. Their office corresponds to that of the alcaldes and municipal judges of the Peninsula. They perform at once the functions of judges and even of notaries with defined powers. They also have the rights and powers to elect assistants and several lieutenants and alguaciles, proportionate in number to the inhabitants of the town.
100 YEARS OF PUBLIC SERVICE DON MARIANO FUENTEBELLA WAS THE CLAN'S "TRAILBLAZER," SERVING AS GOBERNADORCILLO OF SANGAY TOWN BEFORE HE BECAME GOVERNOR OF AMBOS CAMARINES FROM 1912-1916
Apr 14, 2007; The Fuentebella family of Camarines Sur will celebrate its clan's 100-year anniversary in public service on April 15 through...
Our Legacy of Social Responsibility; (Speech Delivered at the Asian Forum 2006 on Corporate Social Responsibility Held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Quezon City, on September 25-26, 2006.)
Oct 10, 2006; Byline: OSCAR M. LOPEZ Chairman, Lopez Group of Companies I ARRIVED just last Saturday from an unforgettable trip to Monaco,...