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San Isidro became a full-pledged municipality when the Senate and the House of Representatives approved Republic Act No. 4744 on June 18, 1966. It started operating as a fifth class municipality on January 1968 with only nine (9) barangays and eleven (11) sitios under its territorial jurisdiction. This was the town’s original composition after its eventual separation from Governor Generoso, the mother municipality.
The town is now a 3rd class municipality in the province of Davao Oriental whose economy largely hinges on agricultural production, i.e., farming, fishing and live stock raising. Majority of its population are farmers and fishermen who are mostly reliant on the town’s land and marine resources for their livelihood. This resource dependency has been going on for several generations and the population’s exploitative nature of resource utilization is now taking its toll. The situation affected agricultural productivity and greatly contributed to the perpetuation of poverty.
The municipality of San Isidro is presently composed of sixteen (16) barangays with an estimated area of 27,542 hectares which is roughly equivalent to 5.33% of the entire land area of the province. Its current land uses are as follows: Agricultural areas, 12,895.20 hectares (46.82%), Woodland/Forest areas, 8,029.50 hectares (29.15%); Grassland/Shrub Land Areas, 5,611.60 hectares (20.40%); Miscellaneous Areas, 110.00 hectares (0.04%); and Wetland Areas, 895.70 hectares (3.25%).
Population-wise, San Isidro has 32,424 residents as of the year 2010 NS0 census of population.The town is predominantly inhabited by Mandayas coupled with a considerable proliferation of Boholanos, Cebuanos, Ilongos and Ilocanos.
The name of the town (San Isidro) obviously indicates the staggering count of Roman Catholic devotees numbering as high as 28,661 more or less, or an equivalent of 81.76% of its total population. Not to be neglected and discounted are the Iglesia ni Cristo which boasts of 863 followers; Aglipay with 586 members; and Islam with 541. The remaining 12.56% (4,403) of the populace belongs to eighteen (18) different minor religious affiliations.
The municipality of San Isidro is geographically located on the southernmost part of the Philippine archipelago and lies on the southwestern portion of the province of Davao Oriental between latitude 126º 03’30” – 126º 12’ 15” north and longitude 6º 41’ 15”– 07º 01’30” east. It is bounded by the Municipality of Lupon to the north; the Davao Gulf to the west; the Cityof Mati to the east; and the Municipality of Governor Generoso to the south. It has a distance of 32 kilometers from City of Mati and 142 kilometers from Davao City.
The seat of the local government is situated in Barangay Batobato which serves as the urban center (Poblacion) where economic activities and endeavors abound. Under the effective leadership of Hon. Justina MB. Yu, the seventh mayor of the locality. The LGU is continuously edging toward computerization so as to keep abreast with the demands of the Computer Age.
The municipal hall building constructed through the concerted efforts of local government officials (past and present) and supported by generous funding from both local and national governments, now nestles snugly on a plain-cut hillside overlooking the blue waters of the Davao Gulf.
The largest barangay in terns of land area is Barangay La Union but it is only second to Barangay Batobato in population count. The latter is the only urban center of the municipality where many economic activities occur. It is also the central urban district of the town and a seat of municipal government.
Batobato is the most densely inhabited barangay with a population of 7,063 or 21.78% of the town’s total population. Baon is third in population count followed by Barangays Manikling and Talisay. The total population of the above-mentioned five (5) barangays comprises about 60.36 % of the entire population of the municipality.
Barangay La Union has the largest area with 5,493.99 hectares or 19.95 % of the entire territorial jurisdiction of the municipality. Next is Barangay Lapulapu (including New Barangay) with an area of 3,131.41 hectares or 11.37 % followed by Barangays Talisay, Maputi and Sto. Rosario respectively. The total area of the above-mentioned barangays comprises about 57.27 % of the total sub-aerial area of the municipality.
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