(1854 – 1945)
Aguinaldo’s Running Mate
A revolutionary leader from the Visayas during the second phase of the Philippine
Revolution, Raymundo Melizza, born on March 15, 1854, was a native of Molo, Iloilo. He was the
son of Capitan Cornelio Melizza, a wealthy landowner in the town. He was educated at the Royal
College of Madrid and at the University of Seville both in Spain where he befriended Filipino
In March 1898, when he learned that the revolution began by Andres Bonifacio in 1896
and taken up by General Emilio Aguinaldo in 1897, was gaining support among patriotic Ilonggos,
he joined Francisco Villanueva, founder of the Conspirator’s Committee, to prepare the plan for the
uprising in Iloilo. The Spanish garrison in the city, however, had withdrawn to Zamboanga. Thus,
the Filipino rebels occupied it without a fight. They then established a revolutionary government
there in compliance with the order from General Aguinaldo.
When the Council of State for the Visayas was formed on December 12, 1898, Melizza was
initially named to it as a member, representing Leyte. Later, he became its president, succeeding
When the Visayan provinces were organized into a federal state under the central
government in Luzon, Melizza assumed the governorship of Iloilo succeeding Delgado.
It was at this time that the American expeditionary forces under General Marcus Miller
tried to take control of the province. However, the Filipino revolutionists, led by Melizza, did not
allow them to land. Sensing their resistance, Miller sent one of his officers, Henry Du R. Phelan, to
confer with Melizza and his council. Later, the Americans succeeded in winning the support of the
Under the American colonial administration, Melizza was appointed as the first governor
of Iloilo serving from 1904 – 1906. One of his achievements as provincial governor was the
capture without bloodshed of a notorious bandit, Dionisio Papa, alias “Papa Isyo.”
In the national election of 1934, which paved the way for the establishment of the
Commonwealth government, Melizza ran as the vice-presidential teammate of General Aguinaldo,
who sought the presidency. Manuel L. Quezon and Sergio Osmeña Sr. defeated them.
Melizza passed away on November 11, 1945, leaving behind his wife, Germana Conlu. They
had no children.
Manuel, E. Arsenio. Dictionary of Philippine Biography Volume 4.. Quezon City:
Filipiniana Publications, 1955.
Quirino, Carlos. Filipinos at War. Philippines: Vera-Reyes Publishing, 1981.