Lapiang Malaya

Lapiang Malaya: The Fanatical Political Party in the Philippines

In the 1950s and 1960s, the Philippines saw a unique political group form and then fade away. This was the Lapiang Malaya, a party driven by the strong presence of its leader, Valentin de los Santos. It started in the 1940s and gained members from the countryside in Southern Luzon. They wanted to bring what they called “true justice, equality, and freedom” to the land.

Valentin de los Santos led the group in a very different way. He said he talked to Bathala and Filipino heroes. He believed freedom would happen again when Christ returned. His use of special objects and prayers both fascinated his followers and worried those in charge. They had a major event against the government in 1967. This event ended with 33 people dead and 47 hurt.

Key Takeaways

  • Lapiang Malaya was a fanatical political party in the Philippines during the 1950s to 1960s, led by Valentin de los Santos.
  • The party was founded in the 1940s and built up its membership from the peasantry in Southern Luzon.
  • Valentin de los Santos, the cult leader, advocated for true justice, equality, and freedom using unconventional methods.
  • Lapiang Malaya’s electoral attempts in the 1957 presidential and senate elections were dismal, receiving less than 0.50% of the vote.
  • In 1967, around 380 individuals from the group attempted to overthrow the government, resulting in at least 33 dead and 47 wounded.

Origins and Ideology of Lapiang Malaya

Lapiang Malaya was a political party formed in 1950s-1960s Philippines by Valentin de los Santos. He gathered supporters from Southern Luzon, working as a leader there. The party focused on gaining justice, equality, and freedom countrywide.

Valentin de los Santos: The Cult Leader

Valentin de los Santos started Lapiang Malaya in the 1940s. He led its efforts in Southern Luzon, using unique methods. These included talking to spiritual beings and respected Philippine figures like Jose Rizal.

Advocating True Justice, Equality, and Freedom

Lapiang Malaya believed deeply in true justice, equality, and freedom. De los Santos tied these aims to a belief in Christ’s Second Coming. This strengthened the support for the party among its members.

Using Amulets, Prayers, and Filipino Heroes

De los Santos and the party used amulets and prayers for protection and power. They also honored Filipino historical figures. This strategy helped create a devoted and unusual movement.

Lapiang Malaya’s Electoral Attempts

The Lapiang Malaya party was very passionate. They used strong methods but still joined elections in the Philippines. In 1957, they faced Carlos P. Garcia and Diosdado Macapagal. Unfortunately, they got less than 0.50% of the vote.

The 1957 Presidential and Senate Elections

In another attempt, the Lapiang Malaya party competed in the 1957 Senate election. Just as in the presidential race, their outcome was not better. No candidate from their party won a seat. The top Lapiang Malaya candidate ranked 41st with 8,915 votes. This was a lot lower than the eighth-placed candidate who got over 1.3 million votes.

Dismal Performance at the Polls

This year was tough for the Lapiang Malaya party. Even though they had strong supporters, they couldn’t connect with most voters. This shows the difficulty that small political groups face in a big democracy.

Lapiang Malaya elections

The Bloody Confrontation of 1967

On May 21, 1967, a group called Lapiang Malaya tried to take over the government. They wore blue and red with yellow capes, and carried strange weapons. This group, about 380 strong, headed to Malacañang Palace, where the President of the Philippines lives.

The March on Malacañang Palace

They wanted to change things, led by Valentin de los Santos. He wanted “true justice, equality, and freedom.” But, they were met by soldiers before reaching the palace.

The soldiers had M-16 rifles. They stood in the way on Taft Avenue, Pasay.

Clash with the Philippine Constabulary

The group attacked the soldiers, and chaos erupted. The soldiers shot at them. In the end, 33 people died, and 47 were hurt.

Casualties and Arrests

Those who survived were arrested for trying to overthrow the government. This event showed how blindly the Lapiang Malaya followers believed. And the government’s commitment to staying in power.

The Enigmatic Demise of Valentin de los Santos

In 1967, a big event happened between Lapiang Malaya and the Philippine Constabulary. After this, Valentin de los Santos wasn’t sent to jail. Instead, he was taken to the National Center for Mental Health because they thought he was not sane. The way he died is still a mystery, with many different stories.

Most people say Valentin de los Santos was attacked and killed by his cellmate who had schizophrenia. This happened while they were both in the mental health center. His death was listed as pneumonia. But some of his followers believe he died peacefully at over 80 years old. They say he was in the mountains of Nueva Vizcaya. This was far away from the trouble of 1967.

The unknown details of Valentin de los Santos’ demise have made his story more intriguing. He was a famous leader of the Lapiang Malaya movement. People still talk about him and what he stood for. His story is still a big part of the Philippines today.

Valentin de los Santos

Lapiang Malaya’s Legacy and Resurgence

After 1967, Lapiang Malaya’s supporters went to Nueva Vizcaya and stayed for 40 years. Domingo De Guia led them. He was Valentin de los Santos’ son-in-law and known for his healing powers. He founded “Vucal ng Pananampalataya” there.

Seclusion in Nueva Vizcaya

In 1967, Lapiang Malaya’s supporters moved to Nueva Vizcaya, seeking peace. They stayed hidden for 40 years. This time away let them keep their beliefs and structure, despite the changing world.

Domingo De Guia’s Leadership

After Valentin de los Santos died, Domingo De Guia took over. He was known for his unique healing skills. De Guia set up the “Vucal ng Pananampalataya” in Nueva Vizcaya. This gave a place for Lapiang Malaya’s followers to practice their faith and ideals.

Reintegration Efforts by Tal De Guia

In 2005, Domingo De Guia’s son Tal became the leader. He started a lechon festival in 2008 to bring people back together. Tal said Lapiang Malaya’s followers are not bad, showing a desire for peace.

Comparisons with Other Cult Movements

The Lapiang Malaya movement has been linked to cults like the Branch Davidians in Waco, Texas. In 1993, agents tried to arrest their leader for having weapons and explosives. This led to a 51-day standoff, causing the deaths of many.

The Branch Davidian Siege in Waco, Texas

Similar to the Lapiang Malaya, the Branch Davidians followed a charismatic leader. They believed in his supernatural powers. Both cults were deeply committed to their goals. This dedication led to serious conflicts with the authorities.

The events in Waco underline the dangers of such extremist groups. They can challenge the efforts of the state to keep peace. Drawing parallels between these cases is key to understanding how to prevent their violent outcomes.

Cult Movements

Lapiang Malaya’s Impact on Philippine Politics

The Lapiang Malaya group greatly affected the Philippines’ politics, especially in 1967 when they clashed violently with the government. Their fanatical and anti-democratic views caused a lot of worry. The bloody clash with the Philippine Constabulary was a tragic event that stuck in the country’s memory.

The Lapiang Malaya was made up of 32 mainly poor peasants. They offered a radical departure from regular political discussions in the Philippines. Their strong belief in their ideas and use of violence made a big challenge for the country’s democracy.

The Lapiang Malaya’s actions impacted the political scene after 1967. They found support among some people, leading to political instability and social unrest. This showed a darker side of the political situation at that time.

Lastly, their fight with the government exposed how weak Philippine democracy and rule of law were. It also talked about the importance of defending these values strongly. The Lapiang Malaya is a story the Philippines should learn from. It tells us why it’s so important to build a political culture that is against extremism and supports democracy.

The Arrest Warrant for Apollo Quiboloy

In recent times, comparisons have been made between the Lapiang Malaya movement and the issues now facing Apollo Quiboloy. In 2022, Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri issued an arrest warrant for Quiboloy. This led to worries about resistance and potential violence by his strong followers, similar to the Lapiang Malaya cult.

Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri’s Order

Signed by Juan Miguel Zubiri, the arrest warrant needed to be carried out within 24 hours. This decision has caused concerns. It involves the risk of police action if Quiboloy’s followers decide to resist. Such a situation reminds us of the violent events between the Lapiang Malaya group and the police in 1967. It’s also similar to the Waco, Texas siege between the government and the Branch Davidian group in 1993.

Fears of Resistance and Potential Violence

Quiboloy faces possible extradition to the USA for serious charges. He has a big group of followers thought to be as dedicated as the Lapiang Malaya cult. This concern is about the chance of a violent confrontation. It might happen if Quiboloy’s followers decide to resist the arrest warrant.

Apollo Quiboloy

Lessons from the Lapiang Malaya Tragedy

The Lapiang Malaya tragedy teaches us vital lessons for the Philippines. It shows the risks of extreme political groups that ignore democracy and law. When these groups clash with the government, violence and deaths can happen.

These events warn us about the dangers of extremism. They also highlight the importance of fighting for democratic values and a strong civil society.

In 1967, the Lapiang Malaya group fought the government. This tragedy emphasizes the need to balance religious views with being an active part of society. Extreme groups can harm how well and together our society works.

By learning from the Lapiang Malaya incident, we can do better in the future. Policymakers and society can work together to prevent extreme movements.

The Lapiang Malaya tragedy shows us how democracy can be fragile. It tells us to protect the rule of law. Especially today, these lessons are key for a stronger, fairer society that values democracy and human rights.

The Role of Fanaticism in Politics

The Lapiang Malaya movement is a clear warning about fanaticism in political areas. Its leader, Valentin de los Santos, and his followers showed intense devotion to their goal. This led to a violent clash with the government. This example shows why we must understand and deal with fanaticism in politics.

The group’s strong belief in their cause, combined with ignoring democratic ways, shows the danger. Groups like this can harm a country’s political setup. The Philippines faced terrible violence due to uncontrolled fanaticism. Lives were lost, and society suffered greatly.

To tackle fanaticism in politics, we need a broad strategy. This includes making democratic institutions stronger. Critical thinking and understanding in media are also vital. Bringing different groups together to talk and share ideas is crucial. Through these steps, countries like the Philippines can protect their democracy. They can also ensure that people with varied beliefs live together peacefully.

fanaticism in politics

Preserving Democracy and the Rule of Law

The Lapiang Malaya incident is a big lesson for us in protecting democratic values and the law in the Philippines. It showed how extreme groups can weaken democratic systems. We will look into how people are working to make democracy and the law stronger. The goal is to stop disasters like this from happening again.

In 1967, the Lapiang Malaya event saw many deaths and arrests during a peace march. This event highlights why it’s crucial to guard the basic rights and freedoms of a democratic society. The Philippines has faced many challenges in its history, like protests, bombings, and political turmoil. All of these tested the country’s belief in democracy.

After these crises, the Philippine government and groups must come together. They should focus on making the law stronger and common respect for democracy. Their work includes making sure everyone can use the justice system fairly, promoting peace in expressing different views, and making the government answer for protecting people’s rights and freedoms.

Using these past experiences, the Philippines can move towards a better, stronger democracy that can deal with any challenge. This will mean keeping democracy alive through strong institutions, active public participation, and a deep belief in the rule of law.

Reconciling Religious Beliefs and Civil Society

The Philippines is known for its mix of different religions. This mix has led to questions about how to balance religious beliefs with civil norms. The Lapiang Malaya is a good example. It combines faith with political views, creating an interesting mix.

Catholicism came to the Philippines in 1521 with the Spanish. It has had a big influence on the country’s culture. Islam, introduced by Arab traders, has its strongest presence in the south. This has sometimes caused tensions between Muslims and Christians.

Besides Catholicism and Islam, the Philippines also has many Protestant groups. They have done a lot for the country. For example, they helped elect the first Protestant president, Fidel V. Ramos. The relationship between Catholics and Protestants has also gotten better in recent years.

Felix Manalo started the Iglesia ni Kristo in 1914. It has many followers. Other groups like Jehovah’s Witnesses and Seventh Day Adventists are also active in the country. “Born Again” Christians highlight a personal connection with Jesus and the importance of the Bible.

The Philippines is working on how to blend religion with civic life. It aims to do this without violence or extremism. By encouraging talks and understanding between different faiths, the country can grow stronger together.

religious beliefs

Lapiang Malaya in Historical Context

To understand the Lapiang Malaya movement, we must look at its place in Philippines’ history. It started in the 1940s, a time of great struggle after World War II. The Philippines was fighting for its freedom.

Lapiang Malaya began with Valentin de los Santos. He attracted people in Southern Luzon to the party. He mixed religious beliefs, love for the country, and criticism of the government to gain supporters.

The party’s ideas came from that era’s culture and politics. They admired Filipino heroes like Jose Rizal. They also believed in Jesus Christ’s return and trusted in prayers and amulets. This mix of religion and love for the nation made Lapiang Malaya unique.

In the 1950s, they ran for office but did poorly. This showed they weren’t very popular. The big event came in 1967 at Malacañang Palace. There, they faced the police and many were killed. This was a sad moment for the movement.

After the 1967 tragedy, the rest of Lapiang Malaya went to Nueva Vizcaya. Domingo De Guia led them. This time away helped them think and plan. It was also a pause before they became active again in the 21st century.

Looking into Lapiang Malaya’s place in the historical context of the Philippines teaches us important things. We can learn from its story about democracy, change, and the role of religion in our society.


The Lapiang Malaya story is a stark warning against getting too deep into politics and the trouble it can bring. The event in 1967 saw 32 dead and 300 jailed. Its legacy reminds us of critical truths for the Philippines to learn.

We must always protect democratic values and work to bring together religion and society for positive change. It’s critical to tackle the reasons for extreme actions. Overcoming problems in our democracy, the Lapiang Malaya lesson encourages us all to act.

The tragic event of Lapiang Malaya shows how fragile democracies can be against extremist forces. Understanding and acting upon this issue, the Philippines can get stronger. It can enhance law adherence, encourage everyone to join in society, and make democracy more resilient and colorful.


What was Lapiang Malaya?

Lapiang Malaya was a strong political group in the Philippines from the 1950s to the 1960s. It was started by Valentin de los Santos. This group began to get members from the country’s southern farming area in the 1940s.

Who was Valentin de los Santos?

Valentin de los Santos was from Bicol. In the 1940s, he set up Lapiang Malaya. He invited many farmers from Southern Luzon to join the group. De los Santos led the party like a leader of a cult, seeking justice and freedom for all.

How did Valentin de los Santos and Lapiang Malaya try to achieve their goals?

Valentin de los Santos had very unique ways to get freedom. He claimed to talk to spirits and heroes, like Jose Rizal. He said freedom would come with Christ’s return. De Los Santos often used lucky charms and prayers in his work.

How did Lapiang Malaya perform in elections?

Lapiang Malaya ran in the 1957 elections. They tried for the presidential and Senate seats. Unfortunately, all their candidates lost. Even their best Senate candidate only got 8,915 votes.

What happened during the Lapiang Malaya confrontation with the government in 1967?

On May 21, 1967, Lapiang Malaya tried to take down President Ferdinand Marcos. They marched to Malacañang Palace, but the police stopped them. Despite this, the group tried to attack, and many were killed and hurt. De Los Santos and the others were seen as troublemakers and got arrested.

What happened to Valentin de los Santos after the 1967 confrontation?

After 1967, Valentin de los Santos was sent to a mental hospital. It’s believed he was killed there. But some think he lived to over 80 in Nueva Vizcaya. His supporters tell this other story.

What happened to the Lapiang Malaya movement after the 1967 confrontation?

After the conflict, Lapiang Malaya’s followers went into hiding in Nueva Vizcaya for 40 years. De Los Santos’ son-in-law, Domingo De Guia, took over. He was known for his healing abilities. When Domingo died in 2005, his son, Tal De Guia, continued their work. He started a festival in 2008 to bring his community back into society.

How has the Lapiang Malaya movement been compared to other cult movements?

People link Lapiang Malaya to other cults, like the one in Waco, Texas, in 1993. In Waco, Davidians acted against federal agents and many died. Both groups had strong leaders and faced violent endings.

What is the significance of the Lapiang Malaya movement in Philippine politics?

Lapiang Malaya’s actions in 1967 left a big mark on the country. The group opposed democratic ways and fought the police. The event was very violent and still affects the political scene today.

What parallels have been drawn between Lapiang Malaya and the current situation surrounding Apollo Quiboloy?

Some see a connection between Lapiang Malaya and Apollo Quiboloy today. Quiboloy is a powerful figure. In 2022, the Senate tried to arrest him, worrying that his followers might react violently, similar to Lapiang Malaya’s actions.

What are the key lessons from the Lapiang Malaya tragedy?

The Lapiang Malaya story teaches us a lot about the dangers of extreme politics. It warns us about groups that go against democracy. The violence and harm it caused remind us to respect democratic values to keep our society safe.

Source Links


You may also like...