Friday, June 09, 2006

Before Boracay, there was Sicogon

Before Boracay attained international renown, Sicogon island in Iloilo province used to be a favorite destination of tourists. Situated at the north-westernmost part of Panay, Sicogon is part of the Higantes group of islands which is under the territorial jurisdiction of Carles, a small 4th class municipality in Iloilo.

Sicogon used to be popular to tourists for its long stretch of white sand beach, said to be longer than Boracay’s 7-kilometer stretch. It is also known for its lush coral reefs ideal for scuba diving and snorkeling. In fact, the sea surrounding the Sicogon-Higantes island chain is the traditional fishing ground of local fishermen due to its abundant marine life. Unfortunately, unrestricted cyanide and dynamite fishing have done much damage to its once-lush coral reefs. Local environmentalists and cause-oriented groups have been advocating for a “moratorium” to wide-scale commercial fishing in the area to give the marine ecosystem time to regenerate itself. But since people have no other means of livelihood, the proposal has not gained much public support.

Anyway, to get to Sicogon, one can either take public transportation from Iloilo City or rent a van for the 3-hour drive to Carles. Upon arriving in Carles town, one can hire a banca (motorized outrigger canoe) to bring you to Sicogon island. If you are coming from Manila, you can also take the Roxas City route because Carles is more or less equidistant to both Iloilo and Roxas City. All in all, getting to Sicogon would take up half a day and an overnight stay there is bitin. One has to stay at least two days to really explore and enjoy the island. The downside (or the upside depending on what you want) is that facilities at Sicogon are not exactly world-class and tourists must “rough it up” a little. Cottages are just simple nipa hut affairs and there is no plumbing. Sicogon would appeal more to adventurous tourists, backpackers and nature-lovers than city-slickers accustomed to the comforts and amenities of home.

Things were not always this way at Sicogon. In the 1970s up to the early 1980s, Sicogon had a world-class resort which was supposedly visited by Hollywood celebrities and moneyed sun-worshippers from all over the globe. There even used to be a private airstrip and helipad on the island which was built by a Marcos crony. Unfortunately, the resort owner defaulted on his loan and the resort facility is now owned by the Philippine National Bank (PNB). To date, no developer is willing to touch the island because of this huge debt, which is said to run in the hundreds of millions of pesos.

My cousin, Dr. Boy Dumayas, used to be mayor of Carles town and tried to promote Sicogon as an alternative eco-tourism destination in Iloilo. But sadly, he lost his reelection bid (as usual, he was cheated) and the new mayor (a retired military officer) is not exactly an eco-tourism activist and environmentalist, to say the least.

Anyway, there are two other things Sicogon is famous for aside from its white sand beach. One is its giant clams, which can grow up to 4 feet in diameter. You can see these giant clams near the entrances of some old Spanish churches being used as vessels where you dip holy water. Sicogon is also famous for its siyukoy (a merman or a male version of the mermaid). According to local lore, the siyukoy is said to bring bad luck to fishermen and cause excursionists to drown.

But neither the siyukoy nor the inadequate facilities have stopped people from visiting the area. In fact, more and more Ilonggos are rediscovering Sicogon. For years, local residents and knowledgeable foreign tourists have tried to keep the secret to themselves lest Sicogon turn into another Boracay. But with Boracay already saturated, the drumbeat of commercialization is fast approaching the island and Sicogon might not remain in its present pristine state for long.

52 comments:

Angel said...

Hey, you're a beach rat too! I learned how to windsurf in Sicogon, under the tutelage of a local named "Manong Henry". Those were the idyllic days, when we could almost walk across another island during low tide, picking up Starfish and touching "Brain" Corals along the way...

chYmera said...

Hello, thanks for making a post about Sicogon. I didn't even know 1/4 of what you've wrote about it...

I hope that Sicogon gets developed in the near future, pero the people there should plan ahead so that it will not become as over-developed as Boracay is right now.

I will feature this post in my site: http://www.exploreiloilo.com, it will appear on August 27 2006.

Thanks for linking my site gali :)

kristine said...

i would love to go there. Is there still existing resort on the island? Do you know where I can book a reservation? i want to go there this March!

Iloilo City Boy said...

Yes Kristine there are resorts on the island but I don't think you can make advance bookings because there is no telephone connection on the island yet. Vacationers just go there and choose from among the resorts they fancy. The island is not usually crowded so I don't see any problem with you getting accommodated.

Anonymous said...

Lastweek.. i was very luck to have a 4 day vacation with my friend mae ann, a native of sicogon, now presently in norway.My friends and I spent the days..swimming in the clear waters..enjoyed picnic and island hopping to all the gigantes islands..we even climbed the tallest peak of the sicogon, named upao and for the first time in my life..i saw abundant pitcher plants in its higher areas..the island would fit those who want to have freedom from stress of work...to just relax and enjoy the wonderful sceneries....thanks to the local folks for assisting us when our banca got stuck in shallow rocky waters...hope to see you again sicogon...

Anonymous said...

Hello!
I'm so proud because you are all talking about our place. I am a native of sicogon this island composed of four barangays and we are in Barangay buaya which you can see the old beach there. I called this a "paradise island" i really feel so relax when i go home for a vacation. The place really beautiful! for me it is more beautiful than boracay. Sicogon was known in early 80's when i was a small girl we always go around just to see foreigners, they love taking pictures and they gave that only for souvenirs.Thank you for posting and giving comments about our place.

Anonymous said...

Hello!
I am a volunteer missionary from our church in Laguna...we used to build a church (Jesus Harvest Assembly) in Sicogon island near the shore of bgy. buaya last year 2006. We will be coming this year to visit it again on april 7, 2007...i hope to see you there...GOD Bless SICOGON Island!

In Christ,
Anthony

Anonymous said...

HI,
we're planning to go to Sicogon this summer. does anyone know of a decent resort to stay at?

Thanks,

Bo

Anonymous said...

hi, my name is janette. my family is from northern iloilo. i have lots of relatives in higantes island. i'd been to sicogon and higantes islands when i was a kid. it's true, these islands are far better than boracay. i know it will be selfish of me to say this but, i just hope that nobody would touch these islands anymore and turn it into another boracay. actually, i don't want other people to know about these island. sorry about that.
just today, i met with a childhood friend because my family and i are going there this weekend. and i was heartbroken when he told me that one of the caves was mined for the so-called yamashita treasures. can u believe that crap?! the turtle-shaped stone formation was not there anymore because of the diggings.
anyway, i would like to appeal to everyone who already knows about the said islands: please let us just keep the secret to ourselves and help protect these islands from exploiters and developers.
P L E A S E!
thank you very much.

janette
buki_ako@yahoo.com

Ronnie said...

I'd been reading and hearing a lot about the beautiful Sicogon Island in Carles, Iloilo which really impressed me so much. I told myself one day I will visit this paradise island in Iloilo, the province of my father. This dream had materialized when I met in Negros Occidental a non-government organization based in Iloilo. It became an instrumental for me to visit Sicogon finally in February 2006. I was working as a reporter then for a broadsheet and one of my assignments was covering agrarian reform issues and NGOs. I met this group at Carles and then brought me to Sicogon Island. The place was really beautiful and peaceful. I also saw the airstrip in Sicogon Island where private planes for both local and foreign tourists landed and took off. Of course, I experienced swimming at the crystal clear water of Buaya beach in Barangay Buaya which boasts of a white creamy sand. During low tide locals say you can walk to the nearby Tumaquin Island without your feet getting wet. It was just a short visit to Sicogon Island and hopefully I could go back there soon and explore the whole island and climb the majestic Mt. Opao. I hope both the Carles municipal and Iloilo provincial governments will promote Sicogon Island and redeem its old glory but they should maintain its beauty and serenity and make sure it won't be exploited like other paradise islands.

ben boquino said...

I would like to thank for all the comments about my home island. I was raised in this island (Brgy. Buaya). I also finished my primary and secondary education in this island. Truely, this island had a very beautiful resort that i used to work part time during my high school days(every summer and christmas vacations). Now, at my 35 years of existence, and working far (Manila) i can still say that even without the resort the island itself remains as beautiful as before that always made me feel homesickness that gave me desire to be there as often as i could. I can still remember that the very first Filipina Miss Universe, Gloria Diaz and the heartthrob himself of his times Vic Vargas made the PINAKAMAGANDANG HAYOP SA BALAT NG LUPA film in mid 70's. I just wish that the resort would be redevelop for the people to have work. truely, Sicogon island is just a beautiful and abundant island. I also wish that the government might give attention and make an action for the people who are destroying the corals and other sources of income of the islanders. For those who can still remember their experiences in Sicogon island and for all the comments, thank you very much.

Ben Boquino

Anonymous said...

hi everyone,its really nice hearing all these comments about Sicogon Island. I will update you all once everything is settled with the Island and all information that you are all asking will be answered by facts... Sicogon will once again be the destination resort of asia... Let us be proud of this....

phipine resorts said...

companies marketing mineral makeups and also get the best bargains in mineral makeup you can imagine,
find aout how to consolidate your students loans or just how to lower your acual rates.,
looking for breast enlargements? in Rochester,
homeopathy for eczema learn about it.,
Allergies, information about lipitor,
save big with great bargains in mineral makeup,

change edition interviewing motivational people preparing second
,

interviewing motivational people preparing second time
,

interviewing people motivational preparing for a second time
,

black mold exposure
,

black mold exposure symptoms
,

black mold symptoms of exposure
,

free job interview questions
,

free job interview answers
,

interview answers to get a job
,

lookfor hair styles for fine thin hair
,

search hair styles for fine thin hair
,

hair styles for fine thin hair
,

beach resort in the philippines
,

great beach resort in the philippines
,

luxury beach resort in the philippines
,
iron garden gates, here,
iron garden gates,
wrought iron garden gates
, here
,
wrought iron garden gates
,
You: The Owner's Manual: An Insider's Guide to the Body That Will Make You Healthier and Younger
,
answer from more much,
eat eating mindless more than think we we why
,
la times classified,
new york times classified


texturizer,
texturizers here,
black hair texturizer,
find aout how care curly hair,
find about how to care curly hair,
care curly hair,
lipitor rash,
lipitor reactions,
new house ventura california,
the house new houston tx,
new house washington dc,
new house washington dc,
new house ventura california,
the house new houston tx,
the house new houston tx, that you ar looking for,
new house ventura california, you need to buy,
new house washington dc,

hair surgery transplant
,

air filter allergy
,

refurbished dell laptop computers
,

hair surgery transplant
,

air filter allergy
,

refurbished dell laptop computers
,

hair surgery transplant
,

air filter allergy
,

refurbished dell laptop computers
,

chocolate esophagus heartburn study
,

chocolate esophagus heartburn study
be informed,

digestion healing healthy heartburn natural preventing way
,

digestion healing healthy heartburn natural preventing way
,


Allergies, lipitor rash,
alcohol rash,
lipitor and alcohol,
lipitor alcohol,

natural remedies to aid healing of esophagus
,

chicory heartburn
,

effectiveness of zocor vs. lipitor
,

chocolate esophagus
,
southwestern wrought iron yard gate,
exterior iron gates,
oriental wrought iron gates,
powder coated iron garden fencing,

hector said...

there are many beautiful beach in the Philippines see our site below for more information thanks...

http://www.lareserve-boracay.com/boracay/boracay-island/

http://www.boracayspot.com/

Anonymous said...

i actually live there...its a paradise...baleleng

Anonymous said...

im so happy to read about these write-up's about sicogon. i spent 3-4 blissful summers during my teenage years in sicogon. this was in the 80's, sicogon was, and afaik, still is owned by my uncles, the sarossas and maranons of bacolod. in fact i think tito edmund is still on the hunt for a foreign partner to revive the resort on that island. i hope the lagoon is still there, there was even a 2km. wharf on bantili beach before. in the 80's sicogon was a 5 star resort.

Anonymous said...

Hi everyone, its really nice hearing all of these comments from you. Sicogon Island is indeed a beautiful place and we will make sure to revive the island so you all can enjoy the once first class resort of the Philippines. The New Sicogon will be better than the old one.... WIll KEEP YOU POSTED....billabong

beach resort said...

black mold exposureblack mold symptoms of exposurewrought iron garden gatesiron garden gates find them herefine thin hair hairstylessearch hair styles for fine thin hairnight vision binocularsbuy night vision binocularslipitor reactionslipitor allergic reactionsluxury beach resort in the philippines

afordable beach resorts in the philippineshomeopathy for eczema.baby eczema.save big with great mineral makeup bargainsmineral makeup wholesalersprodam iphone Apple prodam iphone prahacect iphone manualmanual for P 168 iphonefero 52 binocularsnight vision Fero 52 binocularsThe best night vision binoculars here

night vision binoculars bargainsfree photo albums computer programsfree software to make photo albumsfree tax formsprintable tax forms for free craftmatic air bedcraftmatic air bed adjustable info hereboyd air bedboyd night air bed lowest pricefind air beds in wisconsinbest air beds in wisconsincloud air beds

best cloud inflatable air bedssealy air beds portableportables air bedsrv luggage racksaluminum made rv luggage racksair bed raisedbest form raised air bedsaircraft support equipmentsbest support equipments for aircraftsbed air informercialsbest informercials bed airmattress sized air beds

bestair bed mattress antique doorknobsantique doorknob identification tipsdvd player troubleshootingtroubleshooting with the dvd playerflat panel television lcd vs plasmaflat panel lcd television versus plasma pic the bestThe causes of economic recessionwhat are the causes of economic recessionadjustable bed air foam The best bed air foam

hoof prints antique equestrian printsantique hoof prints equestrian printsBuy air bedadjustablebuy the best adjustable air bedsair beds canadian storesCanadian stores for air beds

Anonymous said...

Hi, in November 1978 I visited Sicogon Island for holidays. I attendet the JCI World Congress in Manilla and after the congress we were a group of Swedish delegates who took a flight down to SI...the plane was an old one from the second world war....We had some unforgetable days on the island and I will never forget those days..
Anders from Falun, Sweden

Anonymous said...

hello.....
i once live in sicogon island as a kid , i reside at sitio caburihan in brgy san fernando...and i seen those coral formation on the reef it was so beautiful it has a lot of colors. i hope i can visit there again...i missed to swim in a clear water and step on the milky white sand on th beach and climb on the enchanted mt upao where actually u can see the whole island nd the neighboring island.... R. CAMPOS

ilene said...

hi everyone,

my father is from sicogon island (silva family)...

i visited twice already the place was great..

i missed the white sand and the grilled fish along the seashore..used to grilled fish at night when my uncle go fishing...

hope to visit again....

ilene

Anonymous said...

Hi all,

When I was about 10/11 (1976) my parents, brother and I went to Sicogon on holiday and actually stayed in the resort hotel. We took a canoe from the mainland and I remember wading in off the canoe with our suitcases because it was quite choppy and the canoe could get no closer! The hotel was amazing and we too waded across to the nearby island when it was low tide. The hotel was beautiful with a canoe lake, beautiful swimming pool, palm-leaved roof tops and the restaurant served excellent food. My parents managed to fly us off the island in the DC10 located there from the VERY short runway there to the mainland when we left. My dad also took some photos of the plane leaving by lying on the end of the runway which effectively was the beach. I also remember the very clear seas and the wonderful weather - clear blue skies every day. I stumbled on this site because I was reminiscing about places I'd previously visited when I was young and thought I'd add my comments. It's definitely a stunning island with its white sandy beaches and I remember how peaceful it was. It would be a shame if it got over developed. I had no idea that the well-to-do went there on holidays. There was hardly anyone there when we went.

Anonymous said...

hi, Im not familiar with that place, i thought it was just wrong pronounciation of siquihor,I heard that with japanese friend , he said he had been there before and he describe to me how beautiful it was, and now i read the story about the island,I also want to get there, but like the other comment said, please let us keep the place secret, and not to build anything in like boracay, that will destroy the place....thanks

buki_ako@yahoo.com said...

hi, again!
it's been more than a year when i posted here. last year, my friends and i went to GIGANTES island. sad to say, the PAWIKAN cave was not as it was before. locals told me that there was some treasure hunting inside the cave. they destroyed everything inside! the stone formations were gone. blasted to pieces. i am really sad about it. the good thing is, Tangke was still ok. we also went to Cabugao and Balbagon islands. still great! i have pics posted in my friendster account. =)
on november 22, my same group of friends will go to sicogon island. my uncle said that the beach is still great. i really hope so. great expectations! =) i don't wanna be disappointed! wish me luck. =)

Anonymous said...

hi btw im theresa, im currently creating a web site for sicogon... pero i dont have expertise in writing articles... actually the articles that i have sa frontpage sang site nga gnahimo ko was copyrighted from you and some sources gn edit ko lang gamay... ask ko tani kung pwede ka ka contribute for some articles about sicogon? i'll appreciate it so much.. anyway here gali ang url sang site theresataylo.net63.net, la pa na xa natapos so nd ko pa mapass sa google for indexing.. open man ko for suggestions... thanks gd... God bless!

Anonymous said...

hello, again! as posted earlier, my friends and i went to sicogon island last weekend. i'm sorry to say this but i think we should just let sicogon be. i know a lot of you will react to this but please let us respect the island. boracay is gone. only foreigeners benefitted from it. they just came and went. they wouldn't care if they left the island in a bad condition. people were displaced. let's just give it to sicogon. it's our last.

Anonymous said...

hello, again! as posted earlier, my friends and i went to sicogon island last weekend. i'm sorry to say this but i think we should just let sicogon be. i know a lot of you will react to this but please let us respect the island. boracay is gone. only foreigeners benefitted from it. they just came and went. they wouldn't care if they left the island in a bad condition. people were displaced. let's just give it to sicogon. it's our last. thank you.

Anonymous said...

hi..your right. ive been to sicogon for so many times, my hide away actually, and i love the place. its so beautiful. It should be taken care, specially by the islanders..well, who else. its their home. we are just visitors, who come and go. people live in such a simple way, the community is so nice, there's no fancy lifestyles, the place don't deserve to be disturb really. Lets treasure it as it is. As we said, there's beauty in nature.

Anonymous said...

COME AND VISIT SICOGON..BETTER YOU WILL BE JUDGE IF SICOGON STILL BEAUTIFULL...SICOGON BEFORE WAS A PARADISE ISLAND.HARD TO COMPARE THE BEAUTY OF THIS ISLAND TO THE NEIGHBORING ISLAND OR ELSE TO THE ISLAND OF THE PHILS.COS THIS ISLAND HAVE THIER OWN AIRPORT AND PORT.SMALL PASENGER SHIP CAN EMBARK AND SMALL PASSENGER PLANE CAN LAND.WONDERFUL PLACE FULL OF BEAUTIFUL SCENERY,VERY ASPIRING ISLAND.THICK AND GREEN FOREST WAVING TO WELCOME U WHILE U ARE APPROACHING TO LAND AND PURE WHITE SAND BEACH SMILLING TO WELCOME U TOO WHILE DUCKING THE BOAT AND SHIP..AND WHILE STEPPING ON THE SEASHORE CORALS AND FISHES TWINLKE UPON YOU.AND CLEAR WATER IN THE SEA HIGH TIDE AND LOW TIDE EMBRACES TO THE SWIMMER.COUPLES,AND LOVERS WILL ENJOY WITNESSING THE SUNRISE SHOW UP AND THE SUNSET GOES DOWN.TUORIST WILL ENJOY AND SATISFIED WITH THE COMPLETE FACILITIES AND ACCOMODATION.PEOPLE ARE SWEET AND HOSPITABLE.A PLACE LIKE UR HOME THAT U ARE SECURED PEOPLE VERY LOVELY..ALAS!!!THE PARADISE ISLAND WAS ONLY A TEMPORARILY.PARADISE ISLAND THE BEAUTY BECOME VANISH AND NEGLECTED.PARADISE BECOMES UGLY,STONNY SEASHORE,CORALS DESTROY AND SMASH,DIRTY AND PURE WHITE BEACH BECOME BROWNES,THICK FOREST LIKE IN SANFERNANDO BECOME BULB.THE PRESERVED BEAUTY BECOME UNPROTECTED.THE BEAUTIFULL BECOMES UGLY.PEOPLE THEY DONT CARE WHAT GOD GIVE THEM.THEY NEVER APPRECIATED,PROTECTED AND PRESERVED THE BEAUTY ITSELF.SORRY TO COMMENT THIS..BUT THIS IS THE TRUTH AND WE CANNOT HIDE FROM THE TRUTH COS TRUTH WILL PREVAIL...HOPE IT WILL BACK THE BEAUTY ITSELF..PARADISE ISLAND OF SICOGON.MABUHAY.....

Anonymous said...

reminders to all tourist desire to visit sicogon........becarefull!!! sicogon beach resort never existing anymore...sicogon now adays so scarry place people is not secured anymore thier is a group killer hiding in the thick forest.native people harash by the unknown killer group.. the farm of the native people destroy and smash.and one of my uantie killed by the unknown killer.they killed with no mercy,they stab her many times on her head, mouth, face.and the hand and finger nail they cut too..yet they are not satisfied for thier doing instead to stop they add more the agony of my aunties death range into a dilemma..they rape her and burn the half body..and threwn her in the dryland creek were they wanted to hide it.can u imagine the age of her 65yrs old.how they tackle to look the suffering of the old woman begging for small feeling of mercy.but coz of the usage of drugs they took, satanic deed poison and manipulated thier minds,..all people unite that night looking for the dead body few hours later at 1am in the dawn time they saw the dead body full of dried blood and savage cruel deed..according to the rumors of the native people.cause of death dew to thier principle to stay and fight until end to the place were they belong coz some of the oldfolks they have right coz they live in sicogon for almost 50 to 70yrs above.they ask why???????all people displaced.coz due to the new plan to re established sicogon beach resort again.plus they irritated and the tension high coz people apply for the carp for assurance for thier living.and this is the reason they irritated because fo the stubborn principle of the native oldfolks people in sicogon to fight for thier own right..now sicogon people ask for a fair justice.but the ? is....is thier justice in this world to those poor people..?hope thier is...i know God will not take for granted nor leave people in sicogon.i know God.. is a GOD of all people rich and poor..hope soon the problem of the people of sicogon will be solve by the power of prayer..that they will remain living thier.no plan for dispatching them anymore..to all sicogonian's trust in the Lord with all heart,and steadfastly hold this verse found in the books of psalm 91. from concern kababayan..mabuhay kayong lahat native of sicogon...

inwowgold said...

WoW Accountbuy wow gold,wow power leveling,Cheap WoW Accountwow gold,Hudson, Dunn declare free agencyworld of warcraft gold,cheap wow gold,world of warcraft power leveling,world of warcraft gold,buy wow gold,Buy WoW Accountbuy wow gold,wow power leveling,ffxi gil,ffxi gil,world of warcraft power leveling,World of Warcraft Account,sell wow gold,wow power level,wow gold for sale,power leveling,,wow power level,WoW Accounts for Sale, faith and creditwow gold for sale,power levelingwow power level,buy cheap wow gold.Gold

Anonymous said...

I've been in sicogon island...No doubt all people who been there had the same stories to tell..Its a paradise...Many local artist have been there...Like rudy ferenander and family,Gloria Diaz for filming her movie,Dolpy,shasha padillia,vandolf,all the cast of TGIS,,like red,angelu,ciara sotto,red,michael and raven..and a lot more...I hope we can bring bach again the beauty of this island..TO ALL THE FISHERMANS RUIN THE CORALS!PLEASSEE!Lets save the crystal water and the coral reef.When you go tho this Island you will feel the hospitable people who will take care of you...and your 110 percent when you are here..Let's work together to bring back the beauty of this Island...

Anonymous said...

OH!sICOGON IS TALK OF THE TOWN NOW!heheh..well,We should guys..We should give pride o this Island because it give names,prestige and popularity in our counrty long time ago..Despite of the expose' news about sicogon.I believe they are all FABRICATED,EXAGERRATED AND POLITICAL SCHEME...I've been there.NEGATIVE BURNING OF HOUSES AND ABUSING PEOPLE.LEts just help bring this Island to be popular once again and share the beauty to all people...MABUHAY SICOGON!!!!

Anonymous said...

under the philippine law, no private entity can own any island in the philippines. it means nga illegal ang pag acquire sang island nga na. philippine islands belong to the filipino people. no exclusivity. please people, review the law. abide by it. don't try to circumvent it. please don't try to make sicogon another boracay. let sicogon be. we owe it to ourselves. esp to the people who were born, raised, lived and died there. give it to them. they're trying to live in peace. tama na na nga pag pamigos! pls don't be selfish. the only fault they have is not having a lot of money to corrupt government officials to keep mum about the law. kalu oy man sa inyo. sorry gid. but it's true. come on guys! let's not be hypocrites. let's not glorify criminals and oppress the people. i still believe in KARMA. if it won't happen to you, it will surely happen to the people you love. i promise you that. kag hi-tech na subong ang karma. bugtaw kamo. pangilag kilag man kamo bi kag medyo huya-huya man da bi? please, just S T O P! thank you.

MBG said...

I visited Sicogon last year to learn that SIDECO (Sicogon Development Corporation) had stuck a deal with a Chinese company wanting to open a casino on the island. I was interviewing Islanders who had lived there for years about how SIDECO was engaged in illegal logging when a 'soldier', known by the locals as the Blue Guard (burn down the odd peasant house, and otherwise terrorize the inhabitants... trained by AFP) came up and demanded us all to leave the island. We were in a school (where land is owned by the Department of Education), yet he claimed that SIDECO owned everything and we had to leave. There was later a warrant for my arrest (or... a warrant for the name that I gave them) issued in order to dissuade me from continuing my research. The island has a fascinating history of treachery, deceit, gun-smuggling, and illicit activities by Marco's croneys. Currently the locals are fighting so that they can continue to live here, as the have for generations. What a beautiful piece of paradise, unfortunately marked by illegitimate activities sanctioned by the state.

Ako_MS_Hannover said...

Thank you, MBG, and the previous poster, well said. I visited Sicogon three times almost 20 years ago when I was just starting college (in the US where I live). I was fortunate enough to stay with a family (Barangay Buaya) - SIDECO also tried to kick me off the island, somehow the locals managed to convince them that I was harmless, and had no money that could be extracted (I literally used my last pennies to fly from Los Angeles to Manila/Iloilo). I will never forget this troubled paradise - troubled because of greed and stupidity of outsiders. Still feel I wasn't worthy of the families that were so generous in their hospitality. Please support the locals, and as a previous poster said, let Sicogon be. The beauty, laughter, generosity of this place is still heartbreaking.

Anonymous said...

but sideco also employed many native islanders when the resort was still operational. so not everything about them is bad. if they build a resort/casino again on the island im sure it will employ many people.

mechelle said...

i'd been in sicogon island 9 years ago..my club voluntered to join the rovers moot and i love the coastal beauty and the mount upao. there is something that i cannot forget on the pitcher plant that we found uphill.. of course i won't tell..its kind of a "personal jokes". we never get the nerve of crossing gigantes island because we don't have enough budget to reach it and we dont know that there is another interesting island ahead. we are very much excited to look the giant bones of a family that has been on that island. the tamasin island, front of sicogon community, where you can reach by foot and through crossing the sea is a wonderful experience. we does snorkeling and tricking the fish by pouring the sands therefore they will get attracted on it as food and there we can see them closely..right in our very own eyes. such a fond memory..I wish to return in sicogon island one of these days.

Anonymous said...

Hi,
Im native in Sicogon island barrio cansolao,the island is paradise. i really miss our house..

From: Leo Girl
LBAbong

tony said...

I was once carrying passengers to sicogon island with a DC-3 type of aircraft RPC-140, we brought techie agbayani with the german playboy magazine crew.
Can not forget this heavenly place.

fond regards,
Capt. Simeon San Luis (Kingbo)

Anonymous said...

tetchie was the girl in the brochures of sicogon island, tito edmund used to joke that she was her GF hehehe

Anonymous said...

I'm a native of sicogon and witnessed the harassment brought by SIDECO. It's a real scare. They gave us eviction notices ordering us to vacate the island. They said it's fabricated? How does be? SIDECO claimed they owned the entire island. But for the information of everybody, Sicogon has 1,160 Has, 809 Has titled in the name of SIDECO, 22 Has is classified as Barangay Site by the DENR. The rest of 329 Has classified as Timberland.
Now, who owns Sicogon Island?
Several cases filed against SIDECO personnel. At present, they have arrest warrants.

Anonymous said...

I'm Jay!

That's true! I'm not against in sicogon development. I wanna see sicogon like boracay BUT.... They must be considerate too. Wag nila saktan mga tao.


I saw the video of harassment too. Nasa youtube ata. Just type (bulig sicogon).

Anonymous said...

first question... why is the music in tagalog? are the people living in sicogon tagalogs?

2nd question.... what in farming do you love so much? has it given you a comfortable life? what if you cooperate with sideco and help establish a world class resort in the island and bring jobs into the island? you could also work in that resort you know.....

Anonymous said...

I'm Jay,

Answer to your first question.......
I want the entire nation understand our scream.

answer to your second question.....
im willing to cooperate with them but their plan must be a "community based eco tourism" not a Sicogon Island Resort complex just to benefit the elite.

Now, paano ka pa makatrabaho sa complex resort nila kay ginapalayas kami subong palang.

are you hapi with that concept?

The must respect my ancestors and you must too.....

my parents house is situated in a public land... then public land man bala ngaa ginapalayas kami? what is the authority of sideco to forced us to leave the island?

I want my fellow sicogoners, please manindugan kita para sa bwasdamlag sang aton kabataan kag sa masunod nga henerasyon....

Anonymous said...

just the whole nation? not the world?

how will it benefit the elite? the elite dont need jobs that the proposed resort will generate, in fact it will beefit the poor cos they are the ones who need jobs...

te layas ka anay tapos pag ara na ang resort apply ka trabaho eh...

public land? before sideco that island was owned by the layson family, its was bought by sideco from them...

Anonymous said...

I'm Jay,
You mean ownership? Legality? TCT-80191 titulo na sang sideco sa duta nga siling mo ginbakal sa mga lacson and when ginbakal? coz it is not stated in their TCT that it was from lacson. and besides the DENR certifies the 22 hectares with lot # 2472 as A&D as barrio site. Then what is timber land? I challenged you!
Another title was released from the Registry of Deeds. Take note ha, its an OCT (Original Certificate of Title declared in the name of my Grandfather Gregorio Bolivar.
Correction, Lacson indi layson. Indi ka siguro taga pulo ay.
Dugang pagid, kon private ni ang duta sang sicogon, ngaa nag-apply si Gere Sarrosa kag tawo nya sa DENR sa Free Patent? kay ila man ni bala, ngaa maapply pagid sila? Sa DENR pa? ti public land gid ya gali eh.
Dugang pagid, kon ila ang isla ngaa applyan pagid nila sang foreshore lease application sa DENR. May MOA pa sa LGU. Baw buking nagid sila ya. In gid ni ila ang sicogon mo.
Tapos abi mo, ang titulo nila, wala technical description.

Ti anu nalang na hay? anu mahambal mo da?

Maayo lang nga pagbasa ah!
Hasta la Vista!

Anonymous said...

I'm J Bernal

I was able to talk with personnel of Department of tourism, and we were able to talk about sicogon. Fortunately, DOT has no plan for Sicogon tourism project.

I was able to talk with a friend who previously worked with the Local Goverment of Carles, Iloilo and she was able to share some ideas with regards to the research conducted by an NGO (FFI) flora and fauna incorporated. They're plan was to introduce spotted deer in the said island. But the conversation lasted for an hour. We tackled a lot; their partnership with Sideco for introducing spotted deer, bridging for tourism project in coordination with WVSU lambunao campus in Brgy. Jayubo. The said project of WVSU is only for rescue center of wild animals and they were not permitted by the DENR to re-introduce this species to other places such as sicogon. It would cause imbalance with the ecosystem.
We ended our conversation formally which some questions hanging on my mind.
How could you raise an endangered animals in such a small island, presence of farming activities, and populated area?
On the otherhand, this spotted deer needs a wide area for them to roam around and propagate. This is a contradiction in terms of human survival and wildlife conservation.
I dont want to create chaos, but I could not really convinced myself that this idea is feasible. Something to think.But one thing I'm sure that the project of SIDECO for re-introduction is a big FLOP!

Anonymous said...

I'm Jay,

Thank you so much Mr. Bernal for posting your comment in favor of us! At present, another set of private guards trained from negros to protect their property. But this heavily armed guards were doing other way around. They threatened farmers not to harvest their fruits since they were commanded by the Sarrosa's but these guards took farmers products for their own consumption.

Boracay Hotels said...

There so many island in philippines like, ilo-ilo, cebu, davao, puerto princesa, and the famous boracay. Hope you can post some photos


Tanya Gemarin

Anonymous said...

FOR JAY!

pagabulahan ka. padayuna ang imo kawsa. kun kinanglan mo ang bulig ko, ari lang ako diri. we are fighting for the same cause. indi pag sapaka ang annonymous nga wala sang may nabal an nga pakawala sang mga kapilalista. ga bura lang na baba ya wala man sya may nabal an. don't give that creature any more info. who knows, it's only fishong for some info from u. this blog site is not the proper place for this. wala na sya may nabal an. ga padayaw lang na sya. so the saying goes: little learning is dangerous.
mabuhay ka, Jay! kag ang kawsa mo. i'll be in sicogon sa sem break. hope to meet u there kun ato ka didto.

fe said...

Hi, my name is Fe and i had a chance to see sicogon Island way back in the 70's when I was still in my 20's. Its was featured in a panorama magazine during the time that Gloria
Diaz did the movie there. I said where is this island, I wanna go there and found out the location, and one Holy week me and an office mate of mine who happens to be an Illonga took a bus from Iloilo. It was 7 hrs. travel time on dirt road that time and the bus was not even airconditioned then, from Estancia took a pump boat for 1hr. the place was beautiful. The accomodation was great, its was then managed by sulo hotel group.Beautiful white sand. I never had the the chance to go back again and was wondering what happen to it because, I've never seen it advertised as a summer getaway or destination. I am now 62 yrs. old and married. I still remember its clear water and white powdery sand. I still kept my pictures wearing a two piece bathing suit. I hope they restore it back to its old beauty and not only for the elite people but affordable to all walks of life.