Mandaluyong City isn’t called the “Tiger City” for nothing. Aside from being one of the highly urbanized cities in the country, it has also won numerous coveted awards in 2011 such as the Presidential Award for the Most Child-Friendly City in the Highly Urbanized City Category, the Kabalikat Award for Local Government Unit in the National Capital Region (for its manpower program), and the Green Banner Award for best in Nutrition Program and Management Implementation.
The city is celebrating today its 18th cityhood anniversary as well as its 67th year of liberation. A 12-day celebration has been going on since January 29 and will end with a bang tonight. Mandaluyong has so much gay and festive air spread all over its area for this dual celebration.
Mandaluyong, fondly labeled as the shopping mall capital of the country, is home to the largest and most modern malls that could rival the finest in Asia. The western half of the business district, Ortigas, is also located in this city. But behind this ultramodern look it boasts of, Mandaluyong has a rich history attached to it.
It was said that Mandaluyong once formed part of what was called the Kingdom of Sapa of the Great Majapahit Empire around 1300. More than a century later, around 1470, it expanded and was called the Kingdom of Namayan. The vast kingdom comprised what are now Quiapo, San Miguel, Sta. Mesa, Paco, Pandacan, Malate and Sta. Ana in Manila, and Mandaluyong, San Juan, Makati, Pasay,Pateros, Taguig, Parañaque, and portions of Pasig and Quezon City up to Diliman. (www.wikipedia.org)
It then became a small barrio known as Sta. Ana de Sapa, an important venue for katipuneros during the Spanish regime, which was later named San Felipe Neri by the Spaniards in honor of the Patron Saint of Rome. San Felipe Neri was merged with the municipality of San Juan del Monte. Eventually, San Felipe Neri became an independent municipality with its separation from San Juan. It was renamed the Municipality of Mandaluyong on March 27, 1907. And on February 9, 1994, pursuant to Republic Act 7675, Mandaluyong attained its cityhood.
At present, the Tiger City led by city mayor Benjamin Abalos, Jr. has 27 baranggays within its 8.2 square miles land area. The city is a picture of modernity as it is home to the largest multinational companies. In its territory also lies the headquarters of the Asian Development Bank. Also, the city houses the premier mental health facility in the country-- National Center for Mental Health.
The festivity kicked off with a Nutri-Fun-run held last January 29. It was followed on the next day by a medical mission and the “Gabi ng Pasasalamat-Bantay Bayan Night” held at the Mandaluyong City gym.
The State of the City Address was delivered by city mayor Abalos on February 6, which was followed by other activities including local and overseas job fairs, inauguration of major thoroughfares and other infrastructures, medical missions, choral competition, Miss and Bilbiling Mandaluyong, employees night, other awarding ceremonies.
The celebration will be concluded by a Liberation Parade on February 9 where an approximated 15,000 local officials, employees, businessmen, civic groups, students, senior and concerned citizens are expected to attend.
With continued cooperation among the residents and leaders who are guided by their city motto “In Unity there is Progress” (Sa Pagkakaisa may Pag-unlad), the Tiger City is truly an urban model worthy of emulation.