Misamis Occidental

Bounded on three directions by bodies of water, Misamis Occidental is known to its neighbors for beautiful waters and bountiful fish and seafood for export. In fact, Layawan River in Oroquieta City is a constant awardee of the national environmental recognition, Gawad Pangulo sa Kapaligiran, as Cleanest Inland Body of Water. But there is one other place that is drawing tourists into this coastal yet rugged province; The city of Tangub, which comes alive especially at Christmas.

It is one of the seven (7) provinces of Northern Mindanao. Surrounded on the northeast by the Mindanao sea, east by the Iligan bay, southeast by the Panguil bay, and the west by the province of Zamboanga del Norte and Sur.

The province has a total land area of one thousand nine hundred thirty-nine hundred thirty-nine and three tenths (1,939.3) square kilometers representing 0.63 percent of the total land area of the Philippines. The municipality of Don Victoriano has the biggest land area equivalent to 16.22 percent of the total of the province while the municipality of Panaon share the smallest area of only 40.28 square kilometers.

It is a vast tract of agricultural land with a rugged interior whose terrain rises gently towards the hilly and rolling lands westward of Mount Malindang and Mount Ampiro.

Misamis Occ. is composed of fourteen (14) municipalities and three (3) cities with four hundred ninety (490) barangays. The three cities are Ozamiz, Tangub and Oroquieta. The latter is the provincial capital. Misamis is taken from the early settlement of the Spaniards at the entrance to the Panguil Bay.

The name “Misamis” is believed to have been derived from the Subano word “Kuyamis” which is a variety of sweet coconut – the staple food of the early settlers in this place. During the years the name persisted as an inference of the geographical location and upon the advent of the Spanish settlers, the word “kuyamis” easily gave way to the more convenient pronounceable but corrupted word “Misamis”.

Economy & Resources

The province economy depends firstly on fishing, secondly on coconuts, thirdly on rice. The province has 169 kilometers of coastline fronting the rich fishing grounds of Panguil and Iligan bays. It also has the biggest area of brackish-water fishponds in the region. Tangub City is a fishing port on Panguil Bay famous for seafoods. Coconut is the chief crop. This is processed into oil, desiccated coconut, and coir, most of which are shipped to Cebu. Coconut processing is the main industry in Oroquieta City. Other crops grown are rice, corn, abaca, coffee, cacao and rubber.

Wood is the major forest product. There is also an abundant supply of bamboo, rattan and various vines. Forest land in the province has an area of 66,002.46 hectares; 53,262 hectares of which are considered a national park (which has legal implications). The province has a considerable deposit of clay especially in the municipalities of Lopez-Jaena and Concepcion. There is also an abundant source of sand and gravel. The province is traditionally a net exporter of various commodities. Historical data from the Ozamiz Port District of the Bureau of Customs show that outgoing commodities, which is mainly of coconut products, far outweigh incoming cargoes.

According to the records of the city/municipal treasurer’s office in Misamis Occidental, there were about four thousand nine hundred fifty-three (4,953) registered business establishments operating in the province as of March 1989, not counting 3 Municipalities (Baliangao, Concepcion, Don Victoriano) where such data cannot be obtained (from 1989 Survey on Business Establishments).

The most number of registered firms (1,561 or 32% of the total) are located in Ozamiz City, the hub of commercial activities in the province. Oroquieta City, the capital of the province, follows close behind, accounting for twenty-two percent (22%) of the total. On the other hand, the least number of registered firm are in Tudela (70) and Panaon (83).

Eighty one (81%) of these registered firms are on the trading business, 10% in the servicing while the manufacturing sector constitute only about 7% of the total. There are only 14 agri-business firms registered. Double sectoral classification accounts for the remaining balance of the total. (from: 1989 Survey on Business Establishments).

Being a coco-based province, major manufacturing firms in Misamis Occidental are engaged in the production of crude coconut oil, cooking oil, lard, margarine, laundry soap and desiccated coconut. Other products are furniture, ceramics gifts toys and housewares, processed food like banana chips and marine products.

Locally fabricated agri-industrial machines and equipments are also available in the province.

The People

According to the National Statistics Office, the province of Misamis Occidental has four hundred twenty four thousand three hundred sixty-five (424,365) inhabitants as of May 1, 1990. Population density is two hundred nineteen (219) persons per square kilometer and total number of households is eighty thousand one hundred eighty-six (80,186).

Preliminary results of the October 1991 survey show that Misamis Occidental has an estimated household population of 297,000 persons whose ages ranged from 15 years old and above. Sixty two (62) percent of 183,000 persons are in the labor force with males outnumbering females by 52 percent. The provincial labor force is dominated by those employed in the agricultural sector with 104,000 persons, majority of whom are agricultural workers.

Social Amenities

The Division of Misamis Occidental of the Department of Education, Culture & Sports has 4 pre-schools, 316 public elementary schools, 4 private elementary schools, 19 public secondary schools including the 12 barangay high schools, 21 private secondary schools, 4 public post-secondary schools, 1 private vocational school and 7 private tertiary schools.

The Division of Ozamiz City has also the following schools: 6 pre-schools, 43 public elementary schools, 5 private elementary schools, 5 public post-secondary schools, 2 private vocational schools and 5 private tertiary schools.

These tertiary schools offer courses in graduate studies, law, education, engineering, agriculture, nursing, business administration and other degree courses.

There are at present the following hospitals serving the whole province.


Government Hospitals

Tertiary hospitals with 100 bed capacity:

  • Mayor Hilarion Ramiro Sr. Hospital, Ozamiz City
  • Misamis Occidental Prov’l Hospital, Oroquieta City

Secondary hospitals with 50 bed capacity:

  • Calamba District Hospital, Calamba, Mis. Occ.
  • Doña Maria Tan Memorial Hospital, Tangub City

Primary hospitals with 10-15 bed capacity:

  • Tudela Municipal Hospital
  • Jimenez Community Hospital

Private hospitals:

Ozamiz City:

  • Faith Hospital (secondary)
  • Family General Hospital & Maternity (secondary)
  • Medina General Hospital (tertiary)
  • Misamis Community Hospital Inc. (primary)
  • St. Mary General Hospital (primary)
  • St. Paul Medical Clinic (primary)
  • Ozamiz Doctors’ Hospital (secondary)

Tangub City:

  • Aruelo General Hospital (primary)
  • Saint Vincent Clinic (primary)
  • Villamor Clinic (primary

Oroquieta City:

  • Dignum Foundation Hospital Inc. (secondary)
  • Guirnela Clinic (primary)
  • St. Therese Hospital (secondary)
  • Oroquieta Community Hospital (primary)
  • Holy Family Clinic (primary)


  • R & L Medical Clinic and Pharmacy (primary)
  • Claire Medical Clinic (primary)


  • Bonifacio Medical Clinic (primary)
  • Clinica Ozarraga (primary)


  • Revelo Medical Clinic (primary)


  • Drazen Medical Clinic (primary)


  • Immaculate Concepcion Hospital (primary)
  • TanHo Memorial Clinic (primary)
  • Lumasag Medical Clinic (primary)
  • Panganiban Clinic (primary)


  • Dr. B.D. Yap Clinic (primary)
  • St. Martin de Porres General Hospital (primary)


  • Lopez-Jaena Community Hospital (primary)


  • Uy Medical Clinic (primary)

There are also 22 health centers composing the rural health units and 86 barangay health stations through out the province.


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