ESTADO FEDERAL DE BISAYAS
ROQUE LOPEZ LETTER, JANUARY 5, 1899
[Original in Spanish. Newspaper. P. 1. R . , 912.2 . ]
JARO, January 5, 1899.
To the inhabitants of the islands of Panay.
BROTHERS AND CO-CITIZENS:- It is an accomplished fact, of which
you yourselves are witnesses, that in fulfillment of the inscrutable arcana
of the will of God, we have consummated a union with the other provinces
of this Archipelago, forming a Federal Republic, whose Supreme Government
and President will be those of tha island of Luzon, after our
independence shall have been recognized by the foreign powers.
In seeking to provide at once what may be most urgent. and necessary
for the administration and good government of all human associations,
after the establishment of the Authority, which is the constitution of the
Law, I hereby decree the following:
ART. 1. I declare that the offices provisionally conferred upon me,
as President, upon Sr. Vicente Franco, as Vice President, and upon all
the gentlemen who form the Council of the Federal State; Councillors for
Iloilo, Sres. Ramon Avancena, Jovito Yusay, Julio Hernandez and Magdaleno
Javellano; Councillor for Cebu, Sr. Fernando Salas; for Capiz, Sr.
Venancio Concepcion; for Antique, Sr. Vicente Gella; for Concepcion,
Sr. Numeriano Villalobos; for Leyte, Sr. Raymundo Melliza; for Samar,
and Secretary General of the Council, Sr. Francisco Soriano; General in
Chief, Sr. Martin Delgado; Commanding General of the Expeditionary
forces, Sr. Pablo Araneta and other Generals, field and line officers of
the regional as well as of the expeditionary forces, by the always brave
and unselfish Liberating Army which operated in the three provinces of
Iloilo, Capiz and Antique of this Island of Panay, the first capital of
the Visayas, are still in force and will continue in force until the association
which has recently acquired its independence shall withdraw them,
in accordance with its Republican Constitution.
ART. 2. I declare to be in force for the present, all the laws whlch
were in force in these Visayan Islands, with the exception of those which
may be opposed to morals, Justice and economy, according to our Republican
ideals, which laws will be discarded at the proper time when applied
by the council of the Federal State of Visayas, all the Authorities of this
territory being hence obliged to apply these laws with this res,ervation,
and they are especially enjoined to call the attention of the citizen presi'dent,
in applying them to the various cases, to any inconsistency which
they may observe between the law adopted and the noble Republican ideal.
ART. 3. The revenue which the State derived by reason of games of
chance, such as Lotteries, the Panguingue and cockpits, is abolished, and
such games are absolutely forbidden after this date; the pilotage fees in
all the ports of the jurisdiction of the Visayas, are also hereby abolished
as being contrary to the encouragement of navigation, and in the place
thereof, a Subsidy is established, which shall be so called, for the police
and preservation of the ports and bays of this jurisdiction of the Visayas,
for the anchoring of each vessel and in proportion to the tonnage of the
same; the unit and rate of this subsidy and the form of its collection
shall be fixed by the Delegate of Marine, Captain of the Port, after consultation
with the ship owners having vessels visiting the port; in the
absence of the ship owners, the consignees, Captains and Masters of the
vessels shall be substituted.
ART. 4. On and after this date there shall be established an Official
Section in the newspaper "La Revolucion," the contents of which is declared
the official text and obligatory, and it shall be published tri-weekly
for the present, the Government assuming charge of its preparation and
ART. 5. Subscriptions for and the sale of this official newspaper are
admitted, the subscription price being one peso per month and single
numbers one peseta.
ART. 6. Compulsory subscribers, which shall pay the subscription
price from special funds, and in the absence of such funds, from the
funds of the Chief thereof, are declared to be all the Local and Provincial
Boards of the towns und provinces, the Courts of Justice and other
official Bureaus, in order that they shall not only not plead ignorance
of the law, but also * * * (unintelligible) .
ART. 7. The native coadjutors are confirmed in their positions as
parish priests of the towns in which they formerly served in any capacity,
they bemg earnestly requested not to abandon those towns without the
authority of this Government.
ART. 8. The towns which have a Cure of Souls are directed and
empowered, to secure such parish priests as they may desire to serve
them, assigning them a salary and allowing them in addition the parochial
ART. 9. I declare this city to be the official residence of the Federal
Revolutionary Government, and that of its officials, it being required that
there reside in this city for the present at least one General and his
subordinate officers, with his command: the Delegate of Marine Captain
of the Port and Chief of the Customs Administration and the other
authorities of the said locality and officers under their orders.
JARO, January 5, 1899.