LINGAYEN, Pangasinan — Malacanang has declared April 5, 2016 as special non-working holiday in Pangasinan to enable the province and its people to observe Pangasinan’s 436th founding anniversary
Proclamation No. 1240, signed by Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa, Jr. by authority of President Benigno Aquino III, will celebrate that momentous occasion on April 5, 1580 when Pangasinan was officially made as a province by an edict of the Spanish crown.
Marked as “Agew na Pangasinan” (Pangasinan Day), the observance will give the people of Pangasinan full opportunity to celebrate and participate in the occasion.
The main highlight of the occasion is the giving of ASNA Awards to the province’s sons and daughters who distinguished themselves in their respective professions and lines of endeavor in the Philippines or abroad that made all their provincemates proud.
Among the highlights of the occasion include a program at the capitol plaza, floats parade and an agro-industrial fair that will feature all of the province’s native products.
2016 is only the sixth year that the province will be celebrating its foundation day as it was only in 2010 that a search and study committee, formed by Gov. Amado Espino Jr. during his second term of office, was able to determine the founding day of Pangasinan after sifting through available records from archives in the Philippines and in Spain.
The research and study committee, which was composed mostly of academicians, headed by Dr. Gonzalo T. Duque, who is at that time the president of Lyceum Northwestern University (LNU), determined that Pangasinan was founded on April 5, 1580.
Based on the report of the research and study committee, a provincial ordinance officially recognizing April 5, 1580 as founding day of Pangasinan was then passed by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP).
The ordinance was signed by Gov. Espino on February 15, 2010, thus, the day April 5, 1580 was added to the official seal of the province.
Records showed Pangasinan was among the earliest political units in the Philippines. It was officially conquered and colonized by Don Martin de Goite in 1571 and was made an encomienda in 1572 by the Spanish royal crown.
Eight years later in 1580, it was organized into a political unit under an alcade mayor, who has jurisdiction of the whole province.
At that time, Pangasinan’s territorial jurisdiction included the provinces of Zambales and La Union. PNA/northboundasia.com