History and Government
The municipality of Aguinaldo was formerly a part of Mayoyao. Created as a component municipality on September 20, 1980 by virtue of Batas Pambansa Bilang 86, it was ratified by the people through a plebiscite on December 6, 1980. Miguel Pedro and Sulficio Maanao were appointed as the mayor and vice mayor, respectively. The members of the municipal council were Federico Juguiad, Sr., Rafael Maguiwe, Manuel Maguiwe, Alfredo Panitio, Venancio Bimmano, and Bonifacio Guinatnan.
Originally, the popular Barangay Bunhian was supposedly the municipality’s name to be adopted. However, the framers of the law that created its birth as a separate municipality preferred to adopt the name Aguinaldo instead of Bunhian as a fitting memory of the First Philippine President, General Emilio Aguinaldo, who in his retreat to Palanan, Isabela during the Philippine-American War had passed through the place and built his stop-over camp at Barangay Bunhian.
After the EDSA Revolution in 1986, Vice Mayor Sulficio Maanao was appointed OIC-Mayor with Geronimo Pinkihan as OIC-Vice Mayor. In the 1988 local elections, Atty. Marcelo Homecgoy won as the first duly elected municipal mayor with Federico Juguiad, Jr. as vice mayor. In 1992, Federico Juguiad, Jr. was elected as mayor holding the position until 1998. At present, the municipal mayor is Delfin Bullan.
Aguinaldo is presently politically subdivided into 16 barangays, namely: Awayan, Bunhian, Butac, Buwag, Chalalo, Damag, Galonogon, Halag, Itab, Jacmal, Majlong, Monggayang, Ta-ang, Talite, Posnaan and Ubao.
Aguinaldo is geographically located at 16°58’20” latitude and 121°20’45” longitude. It lies on the eastern part of the province, bounded on the north by Mt. Province, on the south by the Magat Dam Reservoir, on the east by the municipality of Alfonso Lista, and on the west by Mayoyao and Lagawe municipalities. The municipality has a total land area of 53,806.0006 hectares. Among the barangays, Halag is the largest with a land area of 12,453.4595 has. while Bunhian is the smallest with a land area of 389.4404 has.
The topographical features of the municipality is mountainous which are rich in forest products, like timbers and rattans. The unthickly forested portions are planted with coffee and bananas. The municipality is also traversed by rivers and many tributary creeks. One of the rivers, the Talite River has a potential for irrigation and hydroelectric power.
Climate in the municipality is temperate with two distinct seasons - the wet and the dry. Dry season occurs during the months of February to May while the wet season is from June to January. The coolest months are November to January.
According to some foreign mines explorers who visited the municipality, they claimed that metallic minerals exist at the southeastern part particularly at barangay Itab.
Majority of the people in the municipality speak the Ayangan dialect. This was attributed to the fact that most of the family residents were immigrants from the Ayangan tribes from the southwestern part of Mayoyao and southeastern part of Banaue. Barangays situated at the eastern portion of the municipality are half-Ilocano speaking due to the barangay's location which is near to Isabela province.
Based on the 1995 Census of Population, Aguinaldo has a total population of 12,623, a total number of households of 2,661 with an average househod size of 4.74 and a negative population growth rate of 8.11 for the 1990-1995 period.
The municipality's economy is agricultural with palay as the main crop. Most of its agricultural lands which are rice terraces, are irrigated except for some agricultural lands on the municipality's eastern side which are rainfed. Non-irrigated areas are planted with corn and peanut. Marketing for products and source of farm implements is usually Santiago City, Isabela. Aside from palay production, livestocks are also raised, using cogonal areas as pasture range lands. However, livestock production is limited only to backyard production which is just enough for home consumption. Veterinary services are granted to livestock family owners by the Department of Agriculture.
Other sources of livelihood of the municipality include: handicrafts making use of rattan and second group timbers, and fisheries through fishponds. Most of the existing fishponds are for home consumption only and are done through the water impounding method. Fishing activities for commercial purposes are done by building fish cages at the Magat Dam Reservoir. The method is called “Fish Caging”. Business establishments in the locality are limited to sari-sari stores.
Tourist Attractions and Places of Interest
· Mt. Angnge overviewing the Cagayan Valley