Lawyer Rolando Gatal Butalid, former governor of Bohol and city mayor of Tagbilaran died due to heart failure at the Borja Hospital last Thursday. He was 85.
The late governor who started his political path to become the second city mayor of Tagbilaran after the late Mayor Venancio Inting.Â His political life was one of the longest running since it was in 1972 when he got elected as city mayor of Tagbilaran. He servedÂ for six years as city chief executive.
From the city leadership, Butalid filed his bid for governor in 1978 under the group of then Pres. Ferdinand Marcos under the Kilusang Bagong Lipunan (KBL). He was one of the trusted provincial governors of the Marcoses. In fact, it was during his term when the late dictator frequently visited Bohol.
He served as provincial governor for eight years (1978-1986). He left a good legacy of an honest and friendly leadership.
It was during his term that Bohol was slowly introduced to the world as a tourist destination as he was the governor when the late Anos Fonacier came to Bohol and established Bohol Beach Club (BBC).
He was an icon of the Jaycees being a JCI senator. He was also a past president of the Lions Club and was a Cursillista.
He is survived by his wife, Enriqueta Borja Butalid with four children, namely the eldest, Dominic, has a Masters in Business Administration from AIM (Asian Institute of Management). Claire also has a Masters in Business Administration from Ateneo de Manila. Val studied and finished a degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering at the University of San Carlos. The youngest, Tim, is a Business Administration graduate from the University of the Philippines.
His remains lie in state at Funeraria Gomez where a Holy Mass gets officiated every 7:30pm until Oct 12. His remains will be laid to his final rest on Thursday at the Dampas Catholic Cemetery. A requiem mass will be officiated at the St. Joseph CathedralÂ at 1:00pm.
Mayor Butalid, after defeating Inting in the election of 1971 was installed on December 31 of the same year. His first elective term expired December 31, 1975. One of the major acts of Mayor Rolando Butalid was the development and activation of the Cogon market which was left idle by the former administration by converting the adjacent area into a bus terminal. Although the finances were crippled by the catastrophic fire which gutted down the Tagbilaran Public Market, Mayor Butalid was determined to face the challenges of development. He transferred the business activities from the burnt public market site to Cogon market and expanded business in the area to its present condition, which practically recovered in less than a monthâ€™s time the depleted income of the City incurred by the fire. With his development-oriented administration and guided by a framework plan prepared by the City Planning and Development Board (CPDB).
Mayor Butalid had the assurance of Tagbilaran’s progress. It was during his incumbency that a new political upheaval took place – the Proclamation of “Martial Law” all over the land by then President Ferdinand Marcos where many things were happening. But the most testing problem of his time was to change the attitudes of the people, especially government officials, from hoary bents of minds to the innovations introduced under the New Society.