Merida as an eco-tourism and pilgrimage destination in Western Leyte, a progressive and self-reliant Local Government Unit built on a God-loving and empowered citizenry living in a peaceful, healthy, ecologically balanced environment and resilient community, gender sensitive with a safe and functional infrastructure support system governed by transparent and responsible Local Officials and employees.
To ensure the effective and efficient provision of basic services and facilities along the areas of agricultural productivity, economic and infrastructure development, health, sanitation, environmental protection, peace and order and public safety, for the promotion of the general welfare of the people.
the Local Government Unit of the Municipality of Merida shall promote the growth and development of the municipality and obtain for its citizenry a viable and livable human settlement where social economic and environmental concern are freely and fully pursued within a framework of sustainable development. This is geared towards the realization of the vision, mission, goals and objectives of the government and citizenry of Merida Leyte.
Attract Religious groups, tourists, balikbayans, & visitors to visit Pilgrimage cultural sites
- Encourage and support the development of appropriate scientific and technological capabilities
- Preserve comfort and convenience of the inhabitants
- Promotion of health, quality education and safety
- Maintain peace and order
- Preservation and enrichment of culture
- Promote full employment
- Enhance socio economic prosperity and social justice
- Enhance the right of the people to a balance ecology
Located south of Ormoc City, facing the Camotes Islands and Camotes Sea, Merida is nestled at the Westside of Ormoc City where agriculture, to include fishing is the major livelihood among the populace. A tradition and a rich heritage since the Spanish regime is a strong and lasting heritage since the Spanish regime is a strong and lasting devotion to San Isidro Labrador sustained by the inhabitants tracing back from the original settlers up to the present. Since the Spanish conquest, the Meridanhons faithfully adopted the humble farmer, San Isidro Labrador, especially that agriculture is the dominant economy of the locality.
The town was formerly situated in a place now known as Betaug. It was then called ‘Siapun after a river near the settlement. The town used to be a barrio of Ormoc. In 1860, however, the barrio was organized as a town and was promulgated in 1867 by Hon. Domingo Fernandez, the District Governor of the Province of Leyte. The first Spanish overseer nostalgically named it Merida after his native city in Spain which, like their own, lies along the bank of a river in the river Guardiana
The first leader of the town government was German Justo, succeeded by Blas Bohol, and then Leonardo Macion and Teodoro Cabiling commonly called Captain Doro. Other town notables were Rufino Santiago, Alejo Ugsad, Nicolas Gumba, Ramon Lamoste Inong, Teodoro Laurel, Cipriano Macion, Antonio Francisco, Semon Sangan and Romualdo Boholst, all who served as Governadorcillo during the Spanish time.
Merida was formally included in the parish of Ormoc, and only became independent parish in 1918. The following were the Parish Priests of Merida during the Spanish time: Fr. Ramon Abarca, Fr. Eduardo Alarcon, Fr. Lino Codilla and Fr. Deigo Paras. Along the coast, Merida lies between the City of Ormoc and the progressive town of Isabel, 17 kilometers to the south. Concrete roads and bridges link Merida with adjacent towns and city direct to the capital city of Tacloban. It may be noted that Isabel, formerly named “Quiot” was made municipality by the Spaniards in 1850 which lasted 52 years and was merged into the town of Merida by virtue of Act No. 954 of the Philippine Commission. However, through the help of Ex-Senator Carlos S. Tan and Pres. Manuel A. Roxas, it was restored as a municipality by virtue of Rep. Act No. 191 of 1974, of the congress of the Philippines and Proc. No. 49, and named “Isabel” after the wife of the Senator. The newly appointed officials headed by Galicano Ruiz were inducted to office by the late Deputy Gov. Cipriano Macion of Merida.
The Officials and Employees of the Local Government Unit of Merida do hereby pledge..
Scenic spots which are potential tourist attraction awaiting capital and physical development are so inviting and promising in two barangays of Merida. Lamanoc which is by the shore of Ormoc Bay is rich in beach resort potentials. People in neighboring towns enjoy bathing and spending their weekends in this place. Conferences sponsored by different agencies are usually held here. Menu orders from the visitors and delegates are also accommodated.
San Jose a hinterland barangay is noted for its caves, one from which continually flows voluminous waterfall that could be a good source of a natural swimming pool, a vital component of a mountain resort. Presently, the barangay is accessible with a road and enjoys power of electricity from the lines of the Leyte V Electric Cooperative, Inc. (LEYECO V), the electric cooperative operating in the area. It is barely three kilometers away from Lundag, its adjacent barangay along the national road.
Owing to the establishment of the Leyte Industrial Development Estate (LIDE) at Isabel where the big Industrial complex of Pasar and Philphos are located, Merida emerges as an inviting potential for industrial development. Northwards from the Poblacion, geological survey establishes that a deposit of Manganese is idly laying within the geographical jurisdiction of barangays Lamanoc and Libas. Towards the south along the national highway upwards, barangays Macario, Mahalit, Libjo, Calunangan, and Benabaye where the soils is notably of calcareous origin and barren for crop production have discovered to be abundant in high grade lime, a good source of raw materials for cement.
Presently, the municipality has already enjoyed the new water system utilizing the San Jose Spring source. As to source of power of electricity, Merida has no problem because the primary or backbone line of LEYECO traverse along the national highway of the municipality and its power substation of Mahayag, Isabel is just 15 minute distance.
Speaking of facilities, there is now Public Telephone Calling Station, local and international established at the heart of Poblacion. The existence of Internet Café and the Municipal Gymnasium in the reclamation site which can accommodate the holding of sports and socio- cultural activities. The commercial zone also of Merida has been expanded due to the reclaimed area near the wharf.
It may be noted this time that Sun Cellular has already established its cell site in Poblacion near that of Smart and Globe cell sites which have been serving local mobile phone subscribers years now. This is a far-reaching development in addition to Globelines which have been serving local telephone subscribers for many years now. More than that another communication company that have served Poblacion residents for almost a decade is the Visayan Cable Television Network, Inc. Existence also of two (2) Cooperative Banks are other institutions that the municipality could offer to the townspeople.
Public transport by land to Isabel or Ormoc is available from as early as 4:00 AM to 8:00 PM. To reach Merida from Cebu is only two and half hours ride through super sea facilities, at most 3 times a day.
Through the program of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Merida has already its mariculture zone in the waters of barangays Puerto Bello, Casilda and Can-unzo covering an area of 100 hectares. It has a communal storm resistant mooring system and boundary markers and is subdivided into individual “farm plots” for fish cages and navigational lanes. This now promote sea farming as major livelihood for coastal and displaced fisherfolks and in fact many fish cage operators have employed local fishermen.
The Legislative Building of the Local Government Unit as long aspired before by previous councils was already completed and housed the new session hall of the Sangguniang Bayan, individual cubicles of councilors and offices of the vice mayor and SB Secretariat.
The old building of the Municipal Circuit Trial Court has been renovated and the circuit judge is now holding office but only once a month due to other town assignments. At least hearings of cases in court are already held regularly.
Newly completed projects in the municipality are the new concrete open market for dry goods right in the middle of the public market area, the new Rural Health Main Center near the Legislative building and the recently renovated ground floor of the Municipal Town Hall that housed the Treasurer’s Office, Local assessor and the Local Budget Office.
Viewed from the sea, Merida is likely a tiny sparkling emerald, shining but soothing to the eyes of any weary traveler. A destination for both industrialist and tourist, the environment-conscious and the high-tech dreamers of our nation; truly every Filipino haven. See for yourself the heritage-MERIDA.
The Municipality of Merida has a total population of 29,821 as per CBMS Census 2017-2018.
TOTAL POPULATION BY BARANGAY FOR MERIDA, LEYTE POPULATION CENSUSES 2017
|MUNICIPALITY OF MERIDA
||Members of the labor force
||Members of the labor force
Economic Profile/Land Use
Poblacion is the center of business activity or the common business district due to its accessibility and the presence of public market and other business establishments.
There are 545 commercial establishments of varied types in the municipality, consists of 80 retailers, which include school and office supplies store, dry goods stores, electrical/hardware store, one coco lumber dealer and pharmacy. There are 304 registered sari-sari stores, 12 personal service establishments, 30 food establishments, 30 vendors in the locality. In the public market area can be found 121 sari-sari stores, 5 personal service establishments, 15 fish vendors, 6 meat vendors, 4 bakeries, 5 food establishments, 6 dry goods stores, 7 general merchandise/stores and 1 electrical store.
There are 44 entrepreneurs engaged in the agricultural support business such as copra/palay dealers and 19 transportation business operators, 17 BUS/PUJ operations and 2 pedicab operators. As a support to the transportation business, there are 5 welding/vulcanizing shops and 4 auto repair shops. Three (3) establishments extend financing services to the entrepreneurs residents in the locality. There are 6 recreational establishments consisting of 4 video houses, 1 video tape rental and 1 cockpit.
The municipality has no industrial area which resulted that most of the establishments are located within the built-up area among residential or commercial zones.
In support to the agricultural development of the locality, there are five rice/corn mills in the whole municipality. Two (2) of which are located in Brgy. Poblacion, one in Barangay Pto. Bello, each in rural Barangay Casilda and Tubod.
There 5 corn mills, one in Brgy. Poblacion, one Pto. Bello, 2 Kiskisan (Casilda and Tubod) one baby Cono at Brgy. Poblacion.
For the construction industry, there are eight manufacturers of concrete products such as hollow blocks and decorative tiles located at Brgy. Poblacion, Can-unzo, Pto. Bello, Benabaye and four establishments for window grills fabrication located at Mahalit, Can-unzo, Poblacion, and Benabaye.
To augment the transportation facilities in the municipality, three establishments are engaged in the fabrication of pedicabs. One establishment engaged in wooden furniture manufacturing. Another cottage industry found in the locality is the raffia weaving at Barangay Lamanoc.
Merida has its share of potential tourist sports identified by the local government among these sites are the following;
a. Lamanoc beach resort noted for its fine sand and clear water.
b. Banahaw waterfalls (500 feet above sea level) at Barangay San Jose.
c. Mount Magsanga with hop spring at its foot at Barangay San Isidro.
d. Natural swimming pool located about 4 kilometers from barangay proper is about 25 square meters wide with a depth of 5 feet at Sitio Utap, Barangay Calunangan.
e. Lungon Cave at Brgy. Benabaye (used to be an evacuation center during World War II, along the seashore about 10x10x7 meters).
These spots could be reached by single motorcycles which are the usual modes oftransportation within the locality or by means of vehicles/jeepneys for trips within and to adjacent barangays.
Infrastructure and Utilities
Land Transportation – On Road Network
The municipality of Merida has a total road length of approximately 83.035 kilometers. It is classified into national, and barangay roads. National Road with a total length of 29 kms. (34.92%), 19 kms. (65%) is concrete and 10 kms. (35%) is graveled. Municipal Road with a total length of 4.644 kms. (5.59%), 4.170 kms. (90%) is concrete and 0.474 km. is graveled and 19.458 kms. (39.4%) is earth filled.
Out of 22 barangays, only one barangay whose barangay road is not passable, that is from Sitio Can-unzo to Brgy. San Isidro. The farmer’s great difficulty is bringing their products to the market.
There are twelve (12) bridges in the entire municipality of Merida.
Currently, the municipality of Merida has its communication system through postal services, radio, television, cellular, mobile telephone service, handheld radios, telephone and newspaper/magazines.
Globe, Smart, Sun lines/network and cell sites are all operating in the municipality. Two internet cafes connection is likewise operating at low costs.
The primary source of electricity in Merida is the geothermal power plant in Kananga, Leyte with its relay station the Leyte Electric Cooperative (LEYECO V) stationed at San Pablo, Ormoc City with sub-station at Mahayag, Isabel, Leyte which supplies the municipality of Merida. So far, power supply is never a problem of the municipality because of the big supply of electricity.
The drinking water of the municipality is coming from the Salvacion Spring Development which is operated by LWSS Serves Eleven (11) coastal barangays of the municipality and is managed by the Water District for Brgy. Poblacion and Macario while the Barangay Water Consumers’ Cooperative Association (BWCA) for barangays Pto. Bello, Casilda, Can-unzo, Libas, Lamanoc, Mahalit, Libjo, Calunangan and Benabaye.
The Cambalong Spring Development which is operated and managed by the LGU is the old water source of Brgy. Poblacion. It also serves Brgy. Cambalong.
The LGU also has a new water source, which is the San Jose Spring Development which has an approximate discharge of 50 liters/second serves Brgys. Poblacion and Lundag.
Other barangays also have their own sources of water supply system in which the barangay itself shoulders the maintenance and repair. This means that the municipality of Merida has adequate supply of water which can supply the needs of the consumers.
Merida is located at the Northwestern part of Leyte, more specifically of 124 degrees, 21 minutes and 30 seconds north latitude and at 10 degrees, 54 minutes east longitude. It is approximately one hundred thirty two (132) kilometers from the regional center of Tacloban City. Ormoc City, a trade and power center is adjacent to Merida about twenty seven (27) kilometers away. It is bounded on the North by the City of Ormoc, South by the Municipality of Isabel, East by Ormoc Bay, and West by the Municipality of Palompon.
The area is accessible by land transportation with buses and jeeps plying the Ormoc-Isabel route passing the area every fifteen (15) minutes. It is also accessible by water transportation from other part of the Philippines and neighboring municipalities. Road networks to and from Ormoc City and Isabel, Leyte area already cemented. Terrain wise, the area is rugged and mountainous with patches of plains and plateaus. Along the seacoast can be found virgin and second growth mangroves and nipalands from Barangay Puerto Bello up to Barangay Benabaye. The hinterlands teem with second growth hard trees specifically in Barangsy Calunasan, San Jose and part of San Isidro.
The municipality being on the southwestern side of Leyte Province has a Type 4 climate. It is characterized by rainfall more or less evenly distributed throughout the year. The map on the succeeding pages shows the regional climate by Type with Merida presented in hatched, and other related maps: typhoon map, climatological map showing number of cyclones, and climatological map showing wind velocity.
The soil of the municipality is generally of the clayey type. Soil types in the areas consist of Faraon Clay, Steep Phase, Medillin Clay, Hydrosol Clay, Luisiana Clay and Palompon Clay. Of these types, Faraon Clay occupies the largest portion of the municipality. Areas covered by these soil type total 7,440.669 hectares or about 66.90% of the total area. It covers about seventeen (17) barangays of the municipality, which lie on the central portion extending southwards and westwards along its coastal areas and towards the eastern boundaries with the municipality of Isabel.
Palompon Clay occupies a total of 1,934 hectares constituting about 17.41% of the total land area. It is found in barangays adjacent to the municipality of Palompon on the northeastern portion of Merida.
Luisiana clay is found in barangays Cabaliwan and Pto. Bello on the northwestern boundaries with Ormoc City. Areas occupied by this soil type are 1,100 hectares or about 9.90% of the total land area.
Medillin clay covers only portions of barangays Pro. Bello, Casilda, Can-unzo and Poblacion. Total land area covered by this soil type is 500.00 hectares which is only 4.50% of total land area.
Slopes of the municipality range from 0-3% from its coastal areas on the eastern side and abruptly rising to 8-18% towards the center and the western side of the municipality. It is level to nearly level on areas adjacent to the national highway and the shorelines of Ormoc Bay. Westwards, including the central portion is undulating to rolling. There are also areas, though isolated, with slope range 3-8%; 18-30% and 30-50%.
Areas with slope range 0-3% total to 1,274 hectares or 11.47% of the total land area. Majority of the areas with slope range 8-18% total to 9,004.6698 hectares or 81.06^ of the total land area.