Dueñas is a fourth class municipality in the province of Iloilo, Philippines. According to the 2010 census, it has a population of 33,671 people.
Dueñas had its foundation and Christianization in 1590 with the name of In 1599, it was moved to Sibucao. Four years later (1603) she was joined to Dumangas and two years later in 1605 she enjoyed her independence.
In 1608, she was transferred to Laglag, now Barangay Pader, Dueñas, and remained in this place for 59 years or until 1667. It had only five barrios, namely: Sibucao and Sumandig in the lowlands; and Misi, Camantugan and Malonor in the upland.
In 1668, Laglag was joined to Passi, only to be separated a year after (1669). From 1669 to 1844 or for a period of 175 years, Laglag still remained in the said site. (This was for reason that most of the family name of the residents of Dueñas begin with letter “L” ). But later in 1845, Laglag was moved around four kilometers eastward and given a name Dueñas in memory of the birthplace (Dueñas, Palencia, Spain) of Fr. Florencio Martin, who authored the transfer. Saint Jerome, Doctor of the Church, is the Patron Saint of Dueñas.
The word “Dueñas” or “Dueña” is derived from a Latin word domna or domina, which means landlady or madam who has dominion over a certain house or estate.
Dueñas is politically subdivided into 47 barangays.
- Ponong Grande
- Ponong Pequeño
- San Isidro
- Santo Niño
- Poblacion A
- Poblacion B
- Poblacion C
- Poblacion D
September in Dueñas is a special month, the start of the harvest of many agricultural crops. The last day of the month is the feast in honor of the Patron, St. Jerome. The week-long celebration is a way of thanksgiving after having a good harvest and surpassing the trials and cries during lean months.
The Anihan Festival stands for Dueñas being an agricultural area that mainly depends on agriculture as its major source of livelihood; out of the municipality’s 9,052 hectares, 86% or approximately 7,800 hectares are devoted to agriculture. Dueñas belongs to the top ten municipalities in terms of agricultural crop production particularly rice in rainfed areas in the Province of Iloilo.
The ANIHAN FESTIVAL in the Municipality of Dueñas started in CY 2003. Its main feature is the Tribe Competition which is characterized by street dancing and an interpretative dance depicting the practice, customs and traditions of the Dueñasanons before or during the harvest season. An expression of thanksgiving for bountiful production of agricultural crops.
Likewise, to add color to the festivity, a parade with float and muses of the contesting tribes, search and coronation of Miss Anihan are also being conducted. This is to project the incomparable beauty, talent and brains of the Dueñasanon.
Other activities include agro-industrial fair, food festival, garden show, and “Laro ng Lahi”. This is to showcase the different varieties of ornamental plants, native foods and delicacies, and thriving agricultural crops in the municipality. This occasion also provide the Dueñason leisurely time to play and enjoy various indigenous games of the past, develop camaraderie and sportsmanship among various sectors of the community.
The Anihan Festival is an annual activity spearheaded by the Local Government Unit of Dueñas with the full support of the Anihan Festival Committee.