Believe it… or not.. there is an Abra town where political rivalry is unknown

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BAGUIO CITY (May 18, 2022)— Perhaps only a few know there is a town in Abra province where no intense political rivalry exist.

In Langiden. One of the oldest inhabited localities in Abra of only over 7,000 villagers.

In the past two elections, elected officials literally and figuratively “walked in the park”. The posts from mayor down to the 8 members of the Sangunniang Bayan were uncontested.

Mayor-elect Secel Palecpec though vowed the absence of political rivalry in her town is in no way will make them ‘complacent in serving their people well’. “Ituloy mi ti napasnek a panagserbi,” she said in Iluko.(We will continue our fervor to serve).

Palecpec, who literally and figuratively, saw her town’s march to progress, also became an uncontested vice mayor in 2016 after becoming the town’s number one Sangguniang Bayan member in 2013.

Under the leadership of her husband—- Mayor Artemio Donato Jr., —Langiden, whose name originated from an Ilocano term “langi” meaning the outgrowth of a plant as in the development of a bamboo shoot, was considered a shoot which grew from an old small village to a new town. It has progressed tenfolds receiving much needed assistance through the initiative of Rep. JB Bernos.

Farmers, especially, were at the receiving end of various programs and projects including farm-to-market roads, Mayor Donato Jr. said.

Langiden is one of the oldest inhabited localities of Abra. Its natives originated from the second wave of malay immigrants who came to the philippines and and landed on the shores of Northern Luzon specially Ilocos Sur where the Abra River emptied its overflow. With the coming of the Spaniards, many Malay immigrants resited their conversion to Christianity. They were then driven upstream of the Abra River into the hinterlands of Abra by the Spaniards calling them Itnegs or Tinguians. Most of the Tinguians settled on the eastern bank of the Abra River at sitio Calawag now called Nagbabayan. Some of them however, went further upstream giving birth to other settlements with some settling on what is now Langiden.

The town’s official flower is orchid, due to its unique beauty and fragrance, a characteristic the people associate with Langiden, being the oldest and widest among the municipalities of Abra.

Incoming town mayor Palecpec taking cue from the town’s mantra “Abante Langiden”, vows to lead her town on to its march towards deeper unity and inclusive progress while maintaining enduring peace.

Artemio A. Dumlao