Municipality of Morong
Downtown area
Flag of Morong
Official seal of Morong
Bataan's Wild West
Map of Bataan with Morong highlighted
Map of Bataan with Morong highlighted
Morong is located in Philippines
Location within the Philippines
Coordinates: 14°40′48″N 120°16′06″E / 14.68°N 120.2683°E / 14.68; 120.2683
RegionCentral Luzon
District 3rd district
Barangays5 (see Barangays)
 • TypeSangguniang Bayan
 • MayorCynthia L. Estanislao
 • Vice MayorLeila Linao-Muñoz
 • RepresentativeMaria Angela S. Garcia
 • Municipal Council
 • Electorate23,488 voters (2022)
 • Total219.20 km2 (84.63 sq mi)
24 m (79 ft)
Highest elevation
208 m (682 ft)
Lowest elevation
0 m (0 ft)
 (2020 census)[3]
 • Total35,394
 • Density160/km2 (420/sq mi)
 • Households
 • Income class3rd municipal income class
 • Poverty incidence
% (2018)[4]
 • Revenue₱ 223.1 million (2020)
 • Assets₱ 496.9 million (2020)
 • Expenditure₱ 192.1 million (2020)
Service provider
 • ElectricityPeninsula Electric Cooperative (PENELCO)
Time zoneUTC+8 (PST)
ZIP code
IDD:area code+63 (0)47
Native languagesMariveleño

Morong, officially the Municipality of Morong (Tagalog: Bayan ng Morong), is a 3rd class municipality in the province of Bataan, Philippines. According to the 2020 census, it has a population of 35,394 people.[3]

The municipality is home to Subic Bay International Airport, Subic Bay Freeport Zone (SBFZ; along with Hermosa also in the province of Bataan, and Olongapo and Subic in Zambales), the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant, and the former Philippine Refugee Processing Center. Morong was formerly known as Moron.[5] It is accessible via the Bataan Provincial Expressway, off Exit 65.


Our Lady of Pilar Parish Church

In 1607, Morong was established when the Order of Augustinian Recollects built a church in a small populated village in Bataan. The original site of the church was said to have been in Barangay Nagbalayong, a village southeast of Morong. The orderly rectangular layout of the streets and roads of Nagbalayong Proper is attributable to the rural planning efforts of the AOR.

In the mid 1800s, the municipal center was moved to a more central location relative to other barangays. This new central barangay was named Poblacion and was given a similar rural planning design to Nagbalayong, wherein the streets are arranged in an orderly rectangular pattern. A significantly larger church was also built in Poblacion.

The oldest records about Morong was written by the Augustian Order of Recollects (AOR) and the town always had been referred to as Moron as far back as 1607. There is no evidence that the town was ever named or referred to as Bayandati. Nagbalayong was only colloquially referred to as Bayandati, owing to the transfer of the town proper from Nagbalayong to Poblacion.

Folkloric tradition alludes the etymology of the name Moron to the Spaniards' mishearing of the phrase "mga Moro umurong" when they asked the local people the name of their village. While there are many records of Muslim led slave-raiding expeditions in the 18th and 19th Century, there is no historical record substantiating this claim. The problem of slave raiding did however influence the architecture of the Morong Church, which was built as a church-fortress.

The most probable etymology comes from the Spanish word morón which refers to a hill which can be seen from the sea. Several towns in Spain and in Spanish colonies are also named Morón, namely Morón in Cuba; Morón de la Fronterra in Sevilla, Spain; and Morón in Buenos Aires, Argentina, to name a few. These place all have hilly topographies and are nearby the ocean.

On June 10, 1955, with the understanding of the Spanish language waning in most of the Philippines and with Moron having an unfortunate meaning in English, the town was renamed Morong by virtue of Republic Act No. 1249.[6]

Establishment of the town by the Order of Augustinian Recollects

The Augustinian Order of Recollects (AOR) arrived in the Philippines in 1606 and a year later, in 1607, they began mission work in Zambales. By 1612, the AOR claimed and organized 12 communities in the surrounding area into towns each with small churches and convents. It is said that in 1607, Morong was officially founded as an ecclesiastical parish by the Augustinian Recollects[7] as well as being founded by Fr. Rodrigo de San Miguel who placed it under the protection of the Our Lady of the Pillar.[8]

The Our Lady of the Pillar Parish of Morong, established in 1607 and is now one of the oldest seats of Catholic faith in the Philippines;.[9] The AOR fortress-church made with local stony corals (Porites species) was built around 1890s. The design of the church is similar to Augustinian Recollect built church, the Sta. Monica Church of Botolan, Zambales, also built with stony corals.

The church has been damaged extensively three times. In 1890, the church was damaged by a strong typhoon and after a few months, fire damaged the convent. During WWII, the church was sent on fire by the invading Japanese Imperial Army, collapsing the roof.

During the Philippine War of Independence from Spain, the anti-friar sentiment among Filipinos reached a boiling point. During this war, several friars were imprisoned and several were also killed by Filipino Revolutionaries. Fray Domingo Cabrejas, cura of Morong and Fray Jose San Juan, cura of Bagac were killed by Filipino Revolutionaries. After several months, the Spanish government sent in retaliation a regiment of the Guardia Civil to capture and kill the revolutionaries of Morong.

World War II

Morong during WWII

See also: Battle of Bataan

For the defense of Bataan, the main and first battle position established by the USAFFE was the Mabatang (Abucay)–Mauban (Morong) Line. General Wainwright was in command of the Mauban side of the defense. The 1st Infantry Division of the Philippine Army, under Gen. Fidel Segundo defended the Morong Town Proper.

On 15 January 1942, the reinforced 1st Infantry Division (Philippines) of Gen. Fidel Segundo, defending the Morong came under heavy bombardment, but successfully held the line.

On 16 January 1942, the Imperial Japanese Army marched towards the town of Morong. An alarm force of combined Filipino and American forces was then positioned in the town decided to engage the Japanese forces. The 26th Cavalry Regiment led by Lieutenant Edwin P. Ramsey successfully forced the Japanese 122d Infantry to a retreat. The 27 heavily outnumbered Filipino and American cavalrymen charged and scattered the surprised Japanese. It was the last charge of American cavalry[10]

On 17 January 1942, the Japanese Army returned and engaged Wainwright's forces which then retreated to the Mauban Line finally abandoning Morong Town Proper.

Morong residents join the guerilla forces

On 28 July 1942, Capt. Ralph McGuire, Capt. E.S Johnson along with a company of soldiers went to Morong to organize the Guerilla Movement in the town. The Morong Town guerillas came to be what is now formally known as the 3rd Regiment, Bataan Military District, East Central Luzon General Area.

The incumbent town mayor at the time, Mayor Angeles was inducted as Sector Commander and given the rank of Captain. After two months of organizing, in September 1942 over 1,400 residents of Morong joined the guerilla force. With Mayor Angeles leading more than a regiment of guerillas, he was then promoted to Colonel.

In 15 October 1943, Capt. Ralph McGuire was killed-in-action in Poon Bato, Botolan, Zambales and with his passing the Morong Town Guerilla Sector lost their contact with the East Central Luzon General Area. The activities of the Morong Town Guerilla Sector resumed in 1944 when the emissaries of John Boone went to the town to re-establish guerilla activities of the group.

Issues of the forgotten heroes of Morong, Bataan

All over the country and the world, the heroism of WWII veterans who fought in Bataan are commemorated. Towns and cities, such as Marikina, have erected monuments to honor their citizens who have fought or fallen in defense of Bataan.

In the whole of Bataan, only the town of Morong has no memorial markers have been erected by the government despite the historical significance and sacrifice of the town and its residents during the war. Ever since after the war, the national, provincial and local government has made no efforts to commemorate the brave souls that fought and died in Morong.

A town left sacrificed and undefended during the war, now filled with graves of heroes forsaken and unrecognized.


According to the Philippine Statistics Authority, the municipality has a land area of 219.20 square kilometres (84.63 sq mi)[11] constituting 15.97% of the 1,372.98-square-kilometre- (530.11 sq mi) total area of Bataan.

Morong is bounded by Dinalupihan to the northeast, Hermosa and Orani to the east, and province of the Zambales to the north. Olongapo City is located directly north of Morong, accessible via SBMA–Olongapo Access Road through Rizal Highway to Aguinado Road or Security Road to East 14th Street. It is 51 kilometres (32 mi) from Balanga and 175 kilometres (109 mi) from Manila.

Environmental protection

The Pawikan Conservation Center is a community-based effort to protect turtles in Morong with a focus on protecting the Olive Ridley species.[12]


Morong has a tropical monsoon climate (Af) with little to no rainfall from December to April and heavy to extremely heavy rainfall from May to November.

Climate data for Morong
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Mean daily maximum °C (°F) 30.8
Daily mean °C (°F) 26.3
Mean daily minimum °C (°F) 21.9
Average rainfall mm (inches) 5


Morong is politically subdivided into 5 barangays.[14] Each barangay consists of puroks and some have sitios.

PSGC Barangay Population ±% p.a.
2020[3] 2010[15]
030808001 Binaritan 16.9% 5,966 5,273 1.24%
030808002 Mabayo 13.5% 4,771 4,275 1.10%
030808003 Nagbalayong 17.5% 6,207 5,680 0.89%
030808004 Poblacion 15.6% 5,511 5,105 0.77%
030808005 Sabang 21.0% 7,446 5,838 2.46%
Total 35,394 26,171 3.06%


Population census of Morong
YearPop.±% p.a.
1903 1,906—    
1918 2,576+2.03%
1939 3,301+1.19%
1948 3,336+0.12%
1960 5,734+4.62%
1970 6,738+1.62%
1975 7,793+2.96%
1980 10,637+6.42%
YearPop.±% p.a.
1990 17,155+4.90%
1995 18,731+1.66%
2000 21,273+2.77%
2007 27,119+3.41%
2010 26,171−1.29%
2015 29,901+2.57%
2020 35,394+3.37%
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority[16][15][17][18]

According to the Spanish Census of the country in 1896, Morong was reported to have 2,797 inhabitants.

In the 2020 census, Morong had a population of 35,394.[3] The population density was 160 inhabitants per square kilometre (410/sq mi).


Existing industries in Morong include mango/cashew production as well as vinegar making from nipa palm nuts and the production of basketry using jungle vines.[26]

There is some variety of developments intended for Morong. Industries targeted for development are the manufacturing of component parts or assembly operations. In addition, there are plans to establish convention centers, exhibit halls, golf course and clubs, entertainment and leisure and sports centers, hotels, beach resorts and meditation centers.[26]


Morong has also had some activity in mining. In 1972 it had mining activity from Long Beach Mining Corporation producing magnetite concentrate from beach sands[27] and in 2017 there was headway into opening 709.6 hectares of land to Gandara minerals and development corporation in order to mine basalt and other associated minerals.[28]

Economic zone developments

The Bataan Technology Park (informally called the "Technopark") is the main zone of the Morong Special Economic Zone (MSEZ), established in March 1997[29] after a previous ecozone which was established under the 1992 Bases Conversion and Development Act.[30] The park's investors can claim the following benefits:


Local government

Main article: Sangguniang Bayan

Term Mayor Vice Mayor
1901-1903 Salvador Linao n.a.
1903-1905 Mariano Sulangi n.a.
1905-1907 Hermogenes Ramos n.a.
1908-1909 Salvador Linao n.a.
1910-1912 Nicolas Mangalindan n.a.
1912-1916 Salvador Linao n.a.
1916-1919 Pablo Sulangi Facundo Angeles
1919-1922 Facundo Angeles Nicolas Mangalindan
1922-1925 Melencio S. Batol Prudencio Mangalindan
1925-1928 Cirilo Z. Paguio Gaudencio Mangalindan
1928-1931 Gaudencio Mangalindan Melencio Batol
1931-1934 Anselmo Calma Petronilo Dizon
1934-1937 Claudio Pastelero Pedro Corpuz
1938-1941 Buenaventura Linao Juan Paguio
1941-1942 Estanislao Angeles Juan Paguio
1942-1945 Florentino Bugay none
1945-1946 Ambrosio Guzman none
1946-1947 Buenaventura Linao Juan Llenarez
1948-1951 Isidoro G. Sulangi Ambrosio Guzman
1952-1955 Lorenzo E. Gonzales Primo Valdez
1956-1959 Julian V. Ramos n.a.
1960-1963 Julian V. Ramos n.a.
1964-1967 Antonio Calimbas n.a.
1968-1971 Venancio Vicedo n.a.
1972-1976 Norberto S. Linao Sr. n.a.
1976-1979 Norberto S. Linao Sr. n.a.
1979-1980 Antonio S. Calimbas n.a.
1980-1986 Antonio S. Calimbas n.a.
1986-1988 Armando Quimlat n.a.
1988-1992 Armando Quimlat n.a.
1992-1995 Bienvenido Vicedo Sr. n.a.
1995-1998 Catalino Calimbas _________de Leon
1998-2001 Norberto G. Linao Jr. Rosalinda Quimlat
2001-2004 Norberto G. Linao Jr. Pablito Bugay
2004-2007 Norberto G. Linao Jr. Pablito Bugay
2007-2010 Cynthia Linao-Estanislao, Jose Calma
2010-2013 Cynthia Linao-Estanislao Bienvenido Vicedo Jr.
2013-2016 Jorge Estanislao. Bienvenido Vicedo Jr.

Popular culture



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  2. ^ "2015 Census of Population, Report No. 3 – Population, Land Area, and Population Density" (PDF). Philippine Statistics Authority. Quezon City, Philippines. August 2016. ISSN 0117-1453. Archived (PDF) from the original on May 25, 2021. Retrieved July 16, 2021.
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  6. ^ "Republic Act No. 1249". The LawPhil Project. Retrieved March 28, 2020.
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  9. ^ "Our Lady of the Pillar image crowned in Bataan". CBCPNews. October 10, 2018. Retrieved March 28, 2020.
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  12. ^ MORELLA, CECIL (February 29, 2016). "Turtles' vulnerable start to life on Bataan coast". GMA News. Retrieved March 29, 2020.
  13. ^ "Climate: Morong". Retrieved October 27, 2020.
  14. ^ "Municipal: Morong, Bataan". PSGC Interactive. Quezon City, Philippines: Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved January 8, 2016.
  15. ^ a b Census of Population and Housing (2010). "Region III (Central Luzon)" (PDF). Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. National Statistics Office. Retrieved June 29, 2016.
  16. ^ Census of Population (2015). "Region III (Central Luzon)". Total Population by Province, City, Municipality and Barangay. Philippine Statistics Authority. Retrieved June 20, 2016.
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  22. ^ "City and Municipal Level Poverty Estimates; 2006 and 2009" (PDF). Philippine Statistics Authority. August 3, 2012.
  23. ^ "2012 Municipal and City Level Poverty Estimates" (PDF). Philippine Statistics Authority. May 31, 2016.
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  25. ^ "PSA Releases the 2018 Municipal and City Level Poverty Estimates". Philippine Statistics Authority. December 15, 2021. Retrieved January 22, 2022.
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  27. ^ Morton, Rogers; Falkie, Thomas (1972). Minerals Yearbook, Volume 3. Washington D.C: UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR. p. 660.
  28. ^ (See Entry 29)
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