Long time ago, before the arrival of settlers here in General Santos City, Barangay Sinawal was inhabited purely by natives called “B’laans”. The word Sinawal was taken from B’laan boy was drowned in the once unnamed river in the place. The name of the boy was “As’-nawal” devolved into “Sinawal” since it is easier for them to pronounce.
According to oral history, Sinawal before was thickly covered with trees and vegetation and teeming with wildlife. Its creek were once deep with strong flowing currents and abundant in marine life. There was enough food for the carefree, hunting and food gathering natives in the place. Human activity however, had reduced the area now into denuded, semi barren hillsides which turn brown during the dry seasons. Its creeks are now devoid of marine life, its water reduced to a shalow, steady flow.
The first Christian settler who arrived in the place was a certain Alberto Olarte who hailed from Baseo, Spain. He came from Manila before he arrived in Sinawal in the year 1908. Mr. Olarte married a B’laan maiden and introduced Christianity in the place. He had numerous sons and grandsons, one of his descendants the now incumbent Barangay Captain Antonio Olarte.
The first “Tinyente del Barrio” of the place, however, was not from the Olarte clan but a Cebuano sttler who came into the place in the early 1940s. The said settler married Mr. Olarte’s eldest daughter, Mariana in 1945. He taught the natives how to plow, plant crops and trees instead of simply hunting and food gathering. He also contributed to the education of the people by donating a school site in Sitio Tangan in the 1950s.
He led the barangay for few years in the 1950s until he was over run by Mr. Florencio Olarte (one of Alberto’s son) in a local assembly election. Florencio ruled the place for some five to eight years until he died in the late 1960s.
Upon his death, Mr. Lozano once again was chosen as their leader in 1968. It was also during this time when protestant missionaries came to Sinawal and introduced Orthodox Christianity.
Bernardino Lozano was barangay captain for six years and was then succeeded by his eldest daughter Mrs. Minda Lozano Atendido, who led the barangay in 1974-1988 starting at the age of about twenty-seven. She was then the likely successor since she acted as barangay secretary during his father’s relationship, and hence knew all about the affairs of the barangay.
In this fourteen years of service, Mrs. Atendido has some significant contribution to the barangay, among which; the encouragement of married couples to use birth control and family planning methods; The inculcation of the importance of cleanliness and sanitation in the barangay; The encouragement to plant crop and trees; and; The importance of education.
In 1977, the townsite of Barangay Sinawal was surveyed by the Bureau of Lands and the PBL (Paglilingkod Bagong Lipunan), a committee assigned to inspect and implement the proper arrangement of town plans. Residential lots were also subdivided equally and awarded to the families in the area.
Sinawal then has two primary schools (one in the town site proper and one in Cabuay), a church, a plaza, a barangay hall and a health center, a water reservoir and a paved road of about 100 linear meters. Its incumbent barangay captain (after Mrs. Atendido) is now Mr. Antonio Olarte.
Barangay Sinawal was first recognized as a barrio of the municipality of Gensan in a municipal council meeting last Sept. 17, 1956 on the basis of Republic Act 1408. It has an area of approximately 6,339.20 hectares (or about 11.8% of Gensan city’s total land area) and has six communities; sitio Cabuay, sitio Tangan, sitio Kasoy, Sinawal town site, KPS village and Lansang village. Its area before the creation of Gensan as a city in 1968 was even bigger since Barangay Apopong used to be a part of Sinawal. With the influx of migrants, Apopong was later on segregated from Sinawal due to its large population.
Other InformationTopography/Terrain Characteristics: Plain, Mountainous
North: PolomolokWest: ApopongSouth: Brgy. San JoseEast: T’boliDistance from city proper: 9 kms
OfficialsPUNONG BARANGAY LOZANO, DOMINADOR OLARTEBARANGAY KAGAWAD EMPAL, RONNIE ANGKAY OLARTE, ANTONIO CASTRO TALAWI, RICKY OCAN SORIANO, RAUL ARATEA BANTILAN, ALBERTO AME CANACAN, MILLARY TALUSAN FUENTES, LEONARDO TALONASK CHAIRMAN KITAY, JELANIE SAMBUTOPUROK FIESTA AND BARANGAY ANNIVERSARY
AddressActivityDate Foundation AnniversarySept.7Purok YusavillePurok AnniversarySept.27Purok Litanville Phase 1Sto. Nino Patronal FiestaJan.17Purok Litanville Phase II14 foundation AnniversaryOctober 19 Foundation AnniversarySept.7Purok YusavillePurok AnniversarySept.27Purok Litanville Phase 1Sto. Nino Patronal FiestaJan.17Purok Litanville Phase II14 foundation AnniversaryOctober 19