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Zamboanga Peninsula (Filipino: Tangway ng Sambuwangga) is anadministrative region in

the Philippines, designated as "Region IX". The region consists of three provinces (Zamboanga del
Norte, Zamboanga del Sur, and Zamboanga Sibugay) and two independent cities
(Isabela andZamboanga City). The region was previously known as Western Mindanaobefore the
enactment of Executive Order No. 36 on September 19, 2001.Pagadian is the regional center .



2.1Ancient era

2.2Sultanate of Maguindanao

2.3Spanish rule

2.4Province of Zamboanga



2.7Regional center issue


4Political divisions

4.1Component cities


5.2Area of Growth


7External links


The region is located on the eponymous Zamboanga Peninsula ofMindanao Island, that lies
between the Moro Gulf (part of the Celebes Sea) and the Sulu Sea. Along the shores of the
peninsula are numerous bays and islands. The peninsula is connected to the rest of Mindanao
through anisthmus situated between Panguil Bay and Pagadian Bay. Its territory consists of the three
Zamboanga provinces and the city of Zamboanga, and the boundary between the peninsula and
mainland is artificially marked by the border between the provinces of Zamboanga del
Sur and Lanao del Norte.

Ancient era[edit]
During the ancient era, the southern Philippines, particularly the Sulu Archipelago and surrounding
coastal regions was under the influence of theJavanese Majapahit Empire.

Sultanate of Maguindanao[edit]
During the late 15th century and early 16th century, Malay missionaries spread Islam in the southern
Philippines. Sharif Kabungsuwan, a Johore-born missionary of Malay and Arab descent established
the Sultanate of Maguindanao, which the entire island of Mindanao is named after. The Sultanate
also occupied nearly the entire island, stretching from the Zamboanga Peninsula to modernday Davao City, while the Sultanate of Sulu occupied the Sulu Archipelago, parts
ofSabah and Palawan. Magauindanao's sultans provided Mindanao fierce armed resistance against
the Spanish occupation, especially under the lead of Muhammad Kudarat. They soon allied
themselves with the Sulu Sultanate. The Muslim natives of the region were collectively known
as Moros by the Spanish, meaning "Moor", though the Iberian Moors and the Philippine Muslims had
little cultural connection outside of following Islam. A large chunk of the Spanish-Moro Conflict, the
war between the Spanish conquerors and Mindanao's Muslim natives took place in the Zamboanga

Spanish rule[edit]
n 1569 Zamboanga was chosen as the site of the Spanish settlement and garrison on La Caldera
(now called Barrio Recodo). Zamboanga was one of the main strongholds in Mindanao, supporting
colonizing efforts in the south of the island and making way for Christian settlements. It also served
as a military outpost, protecting the island against foreign invaders and Moro pirates and their
Chinese allies.
The Zamboanga Peninsula played a central role in the Spanish-Moro conflict. It was the site of
constant battling between Spanish soldiers and Moro pirate raids. While the Spanish settlers
successfully established churches in the region, they suffered heavily at the hands of Moro raiders,
and had to repeatedly withdraw from the region. While the Spanish achieved a tactical victory, but

launching several attacks against the Sultanate of Sulu, constant fighting and attacks persisted,
giving the Moros a psychological victory.

Province of Zamboanga[edit]
After the United States annexed the Spanish East Indies in 1898, the Peninsula hosted a briefly
independent state called the Republic of Zamboanga. It was incorporated by the Insular
Government into the Moro Province, which consisted of the Central and Western parts
of Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago. The name and status of Moro Province were changed to
the Department of Mindanao and Sulu on August 16, 1916, causing Zamboanga to become a
separate province.
In 1942, the Zamboanga Peninsula along with the rest of the Philippine Islands was occupied by
the Empire of Japan at the beginning of the Second World War. The Peninsula was liberated in 1945
by joint American and Philippine Commonwealthforces fighting against the Imperial Japanese Army.
On 6 June 1952, the province was partitioned into Zamboanga del Norte and Zamboanga del Sur,
while the chartered city of Zamboanga became an independent, extraprovincial unit.

Together with the Sulu Archipelago, the provinces that formerly made up Zamboanga Province were
re-organised into Region IX by order of Presidential Decree No. 1 as part of the Integrated
Reorganization Plan of President Ferdinand Marcos, that was signed in September 24, 1972.[2]
From 1975 to 1989, the old Region IX (Western Mindanao) was further divided into two sub-regions
by Presidential Decree No. 773 dated August 21, 1975.[3] Sub-Region IX-A consisted
of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi with Jolo, Sulu, as the sub-regional center, while Sub-Region IX-B
consisted of the provinces of Zamboanga del Norte and Zamboanga del Sur, with the chartered city
of Zamboanga City as the sub-regional centre.

In 2001, Zamboanga Sibugay, was created from the province of Zamboanga del Sur with Ipil as the
seat of government with the virtue of Republic Act No. 8973.
In the same year, the residents of Basilan opted to join the Autonomous Region in Muslim
Mindanao (ARMM) in a plebiscite. However, the citizens of the capital, Isabela, did not want to join
so the city remained a part of this region as a result of Executive Order No. 36.
In 2004, Pagadian officially became the Regional Center for Region IX- Zamboanga Peninsula,
despite opposition fromZamboanga City, the former Regional Center.

Regional center issue[edit]

Executive Order (EO) 429 was issued in 1990 by President Corazon Aquino which provided for the
reorganization of the administrative regions in Mindanao. It declared that Western Mindanao would
comprise Zamboanga City, Lanao del Norte, Misamis Occidental, Zamboanga del Sur, Zamboanga
del Norte, Basilan, and the cities comprising those provinces. It also declared that Pagadian City
shall serve as the new regional center.[4]
However, President Fidel Ramos issued EO 325 in 1996 which reorganized the Regional
Development Councils (RDCs). The Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of EO 325 declared
Zamboanga City as the regional center in Western Mindanao. [5]
In 2001, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo signed EO 36 which reorganized and renamed Western
Mindanao toZamboanga Peninsula. It was silent on the issue of regional government centers. [5]

Memorandum Circular No. 75, signed in 2004 by Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita, directed the

transfer of regional offices from Zamboanga City to Pagadian citing EO 429 as its legal basis. [7]
A moratorium on the transfer under Memorandum Circular No. 11 was issued on December 22, 2010
citing the high economic and social costs that the employees were experiencing in maintaining two
residences and in fully transferring to Pagadian. It further directed all regional offices that are already
in Pagadian to continue their operations.[8]
On March 3, 2011, the Regional Development Council IX endorsed Zamboanga as the regional
center of Zamboanga Peninsula.[9][10]
National Economic and Development Authority Regional Director Arturo Valero stated that even if
Zamboanga City is not the regional center, the city will still grow and that the city should better focus
on being a commercial and industrial center.[11]

Population census of Zamboanga Peninsula

Source: National Statistics Office[1]

Political divisions[edit]

Political map of Zamboanga Peninsula





Pop. density



(per km)

Zamboanga del Norte





Zamboanga del Sur





Zamboanga Sibugay











Zamboanga City


Component cities[edit]

Dapitan, Zamboanga del Norte

Dipolog, Zamboanga del Norte

Isabela, Basilan

Pagadian, Zamboanga del Sur

Isabela City is a component city and capital of the province of Basilan. It continues to be under the
jurisdiction of Basilan for the administration of provincially devolved services and functions. But for
the administration of regional services, the city is part of the Zamboanga Peninsula Region despite
the rest of Basilan being under the authority of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
Isabela was the southernmost outpost of the Spanish in the Philippines until the fall of Jolo in 1878.
Having hosted Catholic residents since 1637, and a Spanish Fort (destroyed in World War II) since
1848, it was likewise the primary naval base of the Spanish in Mindanao until 1899. Named
after Queen Isabella II, the city is the southernmost predominantly Christian enclave of the
Philippines, and serves as an entry point for trade and commerce of Basilan island. [citation needed]
Dapitan is also known as the "Shrine City in the Philippines" because the place where Jos Rizal,
the National Hero, was exiled.[citation needed] It is also known for the old St. James Parish and the beach
resort of Dakak.
Dipolog, capital of Zamboanga del Norte, is known for their orchids, thus called "Orchid city of south"
or "Orchid City" because of the abundant wild Dipolog orchids. They have their nature spots and
historical spots, such as Dipolog Cathedral, Dipolog Boulevard, Cogon Park, Japanese Park,
Magsaysay Park, the Sungkilaw Falls, and the 3000 steps to Linabo Peak.
Pagadian is known as the "Little Hong Kong of the South" because of its topographical feature that is
reminiscent of Hong Kong. It also has an affluent Chinese community that officially celebrates the
Chinese Lunar New Year.[14]
Zamboanga City is the only highly urbanized city in the region. The city is the lone member of BIMPEAGA in the Zamboanga Peninsula. Zamboanga City generates more than half of the economy of
the region. It also has the largest airport and seaport and the city in the region with most investors.

It has the first export-processing zone in Mindanao. Farming and fishing are the main economic
activities of the region. It also has rice and corn mills, oil processing, coffee berry processing and
processing of latex from rubber. Its home industries include rattan and furniture craft, basket making,
weaving and brass work.

The region has vast forest resources and previously used to export logs, lumber, veneer and
plywood. Mineral deposits include gold, chromite, coal, iron, lead, and manganese. Among its non-

metallic reserves are coal, silica, salt, marble, silica sand, and gravel. Its fishing grounds are devoted
to commercial and municipal fishing. It has also aqua farms for brackish water and freshwater fishes.

Area of Growth[edit]
The economic fulcrum of the region lies at the center of the peninsula that is the area connecting Ipil
and Liloy. It is the fastest economic activity of the region. The 30 kilometer link between the north
and the south would act as the main artery of economy in the region.


^ Jump up to:a b "Population and Annual Growth Rates for The Philippines and Its Regions,
Provinces, and Highly Urbanized Cities" (PDF).2010 Census and Housing Population. National
Statistics Office. Retrieved 12 August 2013.


Jump up^


Jump up^


Jump up^ "E.O. No. 429". The LawPhil Project. October 12, 1990. Retrieved June 18, 2012.


^ Jump up to:a b "Palace halts regional transfer". December 27, 2010.
Retrieved June 18, 2012. External link in |work=(help)


Jump up^ "E.O. 36". The LawPhil Project. September 19, 2001. Retrieved June 18, 2012.


Jump up^ "Memorandum Circular No. 75, s. 2004". Official Gazette of the Republic of the
Philippines. November 12, 2004. RetrievedJune 18, 2012.


Jump up^ "Memorandum Circular No. 11, s. 2010". Official Gazette of the Republic of the
Philippines. December 22, 2010. RetrievedJune 18, 2012.


Jump up^ "RDC chooses Zamboanga City as regional center of Region

9". March 4, 2011. Retrieved June 18, 2012.External link in |work= (help)


Jump up^ "A Resolution Endorsing Zamboanga City as the location of Regional Center of
Region IX" (PDF). Regional Development Council IX. March 3, 2011. Retrieved June 18, 2012.


Jump up^ "NEDA: Zamboanga City will grow sans Regional Center".
August 15, 2011. Retrieved June 18, 2012.External link in |work= (help)


Jump up^ "Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay: as of May 1,
2010" (PDF). 2010 Census of Population and Housing. National Statistics Office. Retrieved 15
July 2014.


Jump up^ "List of Provinces". PSGC Interactive. Makati City, Philippines: National Statistical
Coordination Board. Retrieved 15 July 2014.


Jump up^ Facts about Pagadian (retrieved: 12 April 2009)

External links[edit]
Wikimedia Commons has
media related
to Zamboanga

National Statistical Coordination Board: REGION IX (Zamboanga Peninsula)