In 1991, the Bohol Sandugo Foundation, Inc. (BSFI) was organized due to inadequate support coming from both government and private sectors, coupled with an overall dwindling public interest in the yearly celebration of the Sandugo Festival.
And for the past eleven years, BSFI has ably spearheaded the celebration of Sandugo and has made significant efforts in reviving a nationwide interest in the event which has now become a magnetic byword in the tourism industry.
The 2003 Sandugo Festival:
Global Partnership Towards Boholano Solidarity
It has been a combined thrust of the Province of Bohol and City of Tagbilaran to promote Bohol as a prime eco-cultural tourist destination in the country. With this, the Sandugo celebration has always been in the forefront, and with the Bohol Sandugo Foundation Inc. at the helm, various activities are already lined up for what will be the biggest Sandugo celebration yet.
Bannering the theme: "Global Partnership Towards Boholano Solidarity," this year's celebration will have an international flavor as various international activities on arts, culture, songs and dances, festivals and many more, will spice-up the major local celebrations like the streetdancing, agro-trade fair, and beauty pageant, among others.
This year's celebration will coincide with the Tigum Bol-anon sa Tibuok Kalibutan (TBTK), an annual homecoming of Boholanos worldwide. This will add a unique international Boholano flavor to the Sandugo as what the Boholano-Foreign Friendship Foundation Inc. did in last year's inter-nation celebration inviting guests from other countries.
Thus, in partnership with the Department of Tourism and the Confederation of Boholanos in the US and Canada (CONBUSAC), the Bohol Sandugo Foundation Inc., the Provincial Government of Bohol and the City Government of Tagbilaran, invite everyone in this year's Sandugo celebration which will surely be a festival to remember.
Bohol Sandugo History
One of the most important historical events etched in the annals in the Philippine history and immortalized in canvass by the famous Filipino painter Juan Luna as one of his masterpieces, is the famous Blood Compact between Datu Sikatuna, a local native chieftain, and Captain Miguel Lopez de Legaspi, the intrepid Spanish explorer and colonizer.
That historic event took place on an unpretentious coast of Bool, now a district of Tagbilaran, on March 16, 1565, a day after Miguel Lopez de Legaspi and his crew of conquistadores on four ships were drifted into the shores of Bool during the course of their trip to the province of Butuan from Camiguin Island because of strong southwest monsoon winds and low tide. On that day, March 16, 1565, Captain General Miguel Lopez de Legaspi, the conquistador from Zumaraga, Spain, with Fray Andres de Urdaneta and some of his crew set foot on land for an audience with the local chieftain Sikatuna. The two bands of different nationalities, race and creed met at a murky place, a few hundred meters away from the beach, and after a few pleasantries, the Basque seafarer and the native chieftain of Bool sealed off and strengthened their newborn friendship in a historic Blood Compact.
The Sandugo Shrine at Barangay Bool In that Blood Compact, Sikatuna and Legaspi each made a cut on the left arm and collected the dripping blood oozing therefrom in a single vessel and mixed with wine. From that single vessel, two others were filled giving one to Sikatuna and the other to Legaspi. The two leaders drank the mixture of their blood.
The Blood Compact sealed the ties of friendship between two people once different in religion, nationality, culture and civilization. The Tagbilaran native chieftain who swore by his ancestral Anito and Bathala, and the Spanish intrepid explorer and colonizer who sought New World with the sword and the cross, drank to the common cause - friendship. It was the first international treaty of friendship and comity between the Filipinos and Spaniards.