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Oroquieta City


Layawan was the oldest name of Oroquieta, which was the barrio in the province of Misamis since 1861 until 1879. The early settlers then of the barrio were Boholano peddlers. They found so many stray animals along the river, thus they named the place Layawan, which means a place of stray animals. A little later, Misamis was divided into two provinces, Misamis Occidental and Oriental. Then in 1880, Layawan changed its name into Oroquieta when it became a town. Some sources revealed that the town got its name from a famous barrio in Spain where Father Toas Tomas Casado, the first parish priest here and General Domingo Mariones y Murillo, a hero in the battle of Oroquieta, were born.

Another version is that Oroquieta had derived its name from the word ‘ORO’ and ‘KITA’. The early inhabitants then had found gold along the river. Thus, the name ‘ORO’ which means Gold and ‘QUITA’ or ‘KITA’ which means to find.

Many years had passed; Oroquieta progressed by leaps and bounces until finally it became the capital town (cabecera) on January 6, 1930. As capital town, people of various neighboring provinces came and inhabited in the place where they earn their living through fishing, farming, merchandising and other forms of businesses. Soon afterwards its income increased simultaneously with increase in population.

It is worthy to note that sometime in 1942, Oroquieta was made the capital of the free Philippines by the guerillas. (Personal interview with the late Atty. Vicente Blanco, Municipal Mayor during the Japanese Occupation)

It must be remembered that during this time the late President Manuel L. Quezon together with the late Sergio Osmeña, Sr., a bodyguard and Major Manuel Nieto, Sr. landed in Oroquieta after their evacuation from Corregidor to Australia.

The seat of government of the Free Philippines then was the Capitol. The Free Philippine Government was then issuing Misamis Occidental emergency notes. Late President Quezon, upon knowing that Oroquieta was made a capital of the Free Philippines and that the town was issuing emergency notes, authorized the Printing of the Mindanao emergency note.

Another noteworthy incident during the Japanese occupation was the visit of the former President of the Philippines, Ferdinand E. Marcos and Major Manzano to Oroquieta. That time, the Commanding General of Mindanao was the late Col Wendell Fertig.

Oroquieta was created a City under R.A. 5518 and inaugurated as a chartered city on January 1, 1970. The charter converting the municipality of Oroquieta into a city are signed by President Marcos on June 25, 1969 in the presence of the then City Mayor, the late Ciriaco C. Pastrano, with the newly elected councilors and other city officials.

Oroquieta City is and will always be the home of hospitable and peace loving people.


Oroquieta City is the Capital city of the province of Misamis Occidental and is within the grid squares of 8 degrees 31' latitude and 123 degrees 33' to 123 degrees 49' longitude. Its boundaries are: North-Municipality of Lopez Jaena; South-Aloran; East-Iligan Bay; Southwest-Concepcion; Northwest-Sapang Dalaga.


The total land area of the city is 263.935 square kilometers.


The city has lowland plains and wide coastal lowlands on its eastern side and rolling to wide highlands and mountains on its western side.


The city belongs to the fourth type of climate, that is, rainfall is more or less evenly distributed throughout the year.


As of 1995, the city had a total population of 56,012 from a 1990 level of 52,500 or a growth of 1.4%. Forty-nine percent (49%) are living in the rural areas.

Source: www.oroquieta.net & www.oroquietacity.com


Oroquieta, formerly called “Layawan”, is a city abound with rich history. According to the early settlers in the barrios who were mostly Boholano peddlers, there were many stray animals along the river, thus, they named the place “layawan”, coming from the word “layaw” which means “stray”. The place carried that name from 1861 up to 1879. Then in 1880, Layawan became a town and adopted the name “Oroquieta”, derived from the Spanish words “oro” and “quieta” which mean “gold” and “find”. This was so because the early inhabitants alleged that they found plenty of gold along the river.

During World War II in 1942, Oroquieta was made the capital of the free Philippines by the guerrillas. The seat of government then was the Capitol. Then, Pres. Manuel L. Quezon together with Sergio Osmeña Sr. and Andres Soriano Sr. took refuge for a while in Oroquieta after they fled from Corrigidor on their way to Australia. Oroquieta became a city under R.A. 5518 and was inaugurated as chartered city on Jan. 1, 1970. The charter was signed by Pres. Marcos on June 25,1969. To date, Oroquieta is the capital city of the Province of Misamis Occidental.



Oroquieta is bounded on the North by the Municipality of Lopez Jaena; Aloran on the South; Iligan Bay on the East; Concepcion on the Southeast and Sapang Dalaga on the Northwest. It has a total land area of 26, 393.46 hectares.

The city has lowland plains and wide coastal lowlands on its eastern side and rolling wide highlands and mountains on its western side. The Bureau of Soils has classified the city’s land features into four slope categories, namely 5-8%, gently sloping or undulating; 8-15%, moderately sloping or rolling; 0-2%, level to nearly level and 2-5%, very gently sloping.


Rainfall in Oroquieta is evenly distributed throughout the year. It is heaviest in the months of January and October. The warmest months are April and June. Oroquieta is outside the typhoon belt and rarely experiences storms.


Cebuano or Bisaya is the major dialect spoken by the residents.


Oroquieta is accessible by land and by sea. Big buses, jeepneys and vans regularly ply from Ozamis and Dipolog where the airport and the seaports are located. It is forty-five (45) minutes ride from Ozamis City. It is one and half hours ride from Dipolog City. The ubiquitous tricycle or motorcab is the major mode of transport within the city. The entire city is supported with well-maintained road network.


Estimated population is 59,843.
Population Density is 2.26 persons per hectare. Population Growth is 1.3% annually.


Manufacturers/Importers/Exporters ………………… 5.80%
Retailers/ Independent Distributors ………………… 70. 00%
Services ………………………………………………. 20.10%
(Cafes, Eateries, Real Estate Lessor, Lodging Houses,
Motels, Optical and Dental Clinics, etc.)


The City of Oroquieta consists of 47 Barangays: 34 of which are rural and
13 are urban.

Apil Dullan Norte Senote Lower Lamac
Binuangan Dullan Sur Tipan Upper Lamac
Bolibol Layawan Toliyok Lower Langcangan
Buenavista Malindang Tuyabang Alto Upper Langcangan
Bunga Mialen Tuyabang Bajo Proper Langcangan
Buntawan Mobod Tuyabang Proper Lower Loboc
Burgos Paypayan Victoria Upper Loboc
Canubay Pines Villaflor Poblacion I
Ciriaco Pastrano Lower Rizal Poblacion II Clarin Settlement Upper Rizal Taboc Norte
Dolipos Alto San Vicente Alto Taboc Sur
Dolipos Bajo San Vicente Bajo Talairon
Dulapo Sebucal Talic


Charter & Cabecera Day January 1 - 6
Inter-Barangay Basketball & Volleyball Tournaments March - June
Tabanog (Kite) Festival April
Santacruzan May
City Fiesta in honor of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary October 16
• Inug-og Festival October 14
• Lakambini ng Oroquieta Pageant October 14
• Agro - Trade Fair & Exhibit Fiesta week
Light a Tree for Christmas December 1


1997 Champion “Cleanest and Greenest Component City of the Philippines”
2nd Runner-Up “Layawan River as one of the “Cleanest Inland Bodies of Water in Philippines”
1997-1998 Awardee National Galing Pook 1998 2nd Runner-Up “Cleanest and Greenest Component City of the Philippines”
1999 2nd Runner-Up “Cleanest and Greenest Component City of the Philippines”
2nd Runner-Up “Layawan River as one of the Cleanest Inland Bodies of Water of the Philippines”
2000-1st Runner up “Cleanest and Greenest Component City of the Philippines” 1st Runner up “Layawan River as one of the Cleanest Inland Bodies of Water of the Philippines”
2001 - Champion “Cleanest and Greenest Component City of the Philippines”


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