Compostela Valley (Cebuano: Kawalogang Kompostela) is a province of the Philippines located in the Davao Region in Mindanao. The province, called Comval for short, used to be part of Davao del Norte until it was made independent in 1998. It is the fourth newest province of the Philippines, behind Dinagat Islands, Zamboanga Sibugay and Davao Occidental. Its capital is Nabunturan. The province borders Davao del Norte to the west,Agusan del Sur to the north, and Davao Oriental to the east. To the southwest lies the Davao Gulf. Its first elected governor was Jose Caballero, formerly a lawyer for a mining group in the province.
Map of the Philippines with Compostela Valley highlighted
Compostela Valley, the 78th province in the country, was carved out of Davao del Norte Province by virtue of Republic Act No. 8470, signed by President Fidel V. Ramos on January 30, 1998. On March 7 of the same year, the law was ratified through a plebiscite conducted in the twenty-two (22) municipalities of the mother province.
The movement to create a separate province from Davao del Norte started in the 1980s during the time of Congressman Lorenzo S. Sarmiento, Sr., himself the author of the division of the original province of Davao into three (3) provinces of Davao Oriental, Davao Del Sur, and Davao Del Norte. Believing that the sheer size of Davao Del Norte, then the 8th largest province in the country, had greatly hindered the realization of the province’s full potentials, he filed a bill in Congress seeking to create a new province to be composed of Mawab, Maragusan, New Bataan, Nabunturan, Montevista, Monkayo, and Compostela, with the latter as the capital town. However, this was not realized until his death in the late 1980s. His son, Rogelio M. Sarmiento, who became his successor in Congress, made way for the passage of the bill creating the province.
Upon consultation with the governor of Davao Del Norte, Prospero S. Amatong, the province’s other two legislators, 3rd District Congressman Rodolfo P. Del Rosario and 2nd District Congressman Baltazar A. Sator, and other provincial and municipal officials, it was decided that the addition of four municipalities, namely Maco, Mabini, Pantukan, and Laak to the proposed province would be the most ideal and equitable configuration as this would make both provinces on an almost equal footing in terms of area, population, and development opportunities. It was also decided that Nabunturan would be the capital town because of its more central location.
The main sources of livelihood are agricultural products such as rice, coconut, cacao, coffee, papaya, mango, pineapple, durian and banana. It has been projected that by 2030 the province will be one of the richest provinces in the country because of its rich natural resources and hardworking people. Some residents have fishponds and culture their own fish like tilapia and milkfish. The province is also rich with gold ore.