Legendary History

         Several versions on the   derivation  of  the  name  Labason  were gathered. The most common legend is the Visayan term “Lab-as”, meaning fresh fish. This place was noted for its abundance of fresh fish,  neverthe- less, early traders called this place “Lab-ason”. Later, it became  Labason, the official name of the Municipality of fresh fishes.

Political and Socio-economic History

               In accordance with the code  of  Mindanao  and Sulu,  on  July  10, 1916, Labason was made  a  municipal  district, making  Panganuran as  the seat of government under Zamboanga. The extent of  its  jurisdiction  was from Baliguian to Banigan. Mandang Kawan,  a  Subano,  was  appointed  as the first Municipal District  President,  with  Don  Juan  Moro  as  the Vice President.

              Economic  and  Social  conditions  of the people were improved after Labason  was  made  a  Municipal District. Years later, the people  of Labason felt the need to be independent from the town of Sindangan such desires were granted by the government.

              On January 24, 1948, Labason was  created into a municipality by virtue of the Executive Order No. 79,  dated  August 12, 1947. Included  in this Executive Order is the creation of  Barangays  of  Dansalan,  Kipit  and Patawag under Labason’s jurisdiction.

              Gil Sanchez, Sr. was appointed as the  first  Mayor  of  the  town, with Constancio Galon as his Vice-Mayor. The Honorable  Gil  Sanchez,  Sr. started the foundation of development for Labason.

               Town planning, laying out of roads and creation of new barangays were undertaken during his term. He also facilitated the  opening  and  re- opening of some schools.

               In 1952, a Cadastral  Survey for the Municipality  was undertaken by  Certeza   Surveying   Company   under  the    Economic  Development Authority (ECA) project 6 and 7.  In  accordance  to  the  resolution  dated October 1, 1952, Mayor Sanchez was given the authority by the  Municipal Council  to  send   circular  letters  to  all  the  mayors  of  the  congested provinces of  Luzon,  Visayas  and  other  parts  of  Mindanao  in  order  to disseminate  information  on  the  opportunity  of acquiring  lands  in  this portion of the archipelago. As a result  of such action, people from Luzon, Visayas  and  other  parts  of Mindanao came to settle to this municipality. The  lands  in  the  town  proper  were  subdivided,  and  encouraged  the people to own  lots  and  to develop them. Business started to sprout  and more  people  begun  to  engage in commercial activities.  It was then the first pace of Labason’s journey towards development.

               During  the elections in 1956, Generoso Tokong  was the elected Mayor, together with Leoncio Bihag  as the  Vice-Mayor.  They  continued the unfinished projects of  the  past  administration  and  introduced  new improvements. One of which is the construction of the temporary market and Municipal building. He was re-elected  in  the  1960m\ polls  and  Atty. Primitivo Abarquez, Jr. was his Vice-Mayor during his term.

                However,  in  the  1964  elections,  Graciano B. Canda  won  as Mayor of Labason. Improvements of the existing projects were undertaken by the Mayor, thus development was in a  faster  pace.  The  presence  of roads and bridges also gave ease in the implementation of all his programs and projects. New barangays  were  created,  new  barangay  roads  were opened and existing roads were improved and maintained.

                Mayor Graciano B. Canda stayed  in  the  Office  from  1964  to 1986. He had started and finished some projects, famous  of  those  is  the Irrigation Dam in La Union and the Labason Emergency Hospital.

                After the Snap Elections and the  People  Power  Revolution  at EDSA in 1986, Mayor  Graciano B. Canda  was  then  replaced  by  the  OIC Mayor  Francisco  Buctuan, Sr. who stayed in the office from April 1986 to November 1987. He  facilitated  the  gravelling  of  some barangay  roads. Months before the 1988 polls, Dr. Sagrado  Ocaya  was  elected  as  Mayor. Some of the local and nationally funded projects during his administration were the water catchment in Bayangan, Office spaces at the ABC Gym and part of the sea wall.

                On February 10, 1990 the land area of Labason decreased from 55,950.00  to   32,692.715002  hectares due  to  the  creation  of  the Municipality of  Kalawit.  Labason  gave  twelve  barangays  to  the  newly created municipality.



Zamboanga del Norte: Municipality of Labason