Ladislao N. Diwa
He was born in San Roque, Cavite the son of Mariano Diwa and Cecilia Nocon. He first studied at home and was enrolled at the Colegio de San Juan de Letran and later studied for the priesthood at the University of Santo Tomas. Before his ordination he had to abandon his ecclesiastical studies and duties because of his fathers objections. He had shifted his attention in the study of law at the same university, where he and Andres Bonifacio became friends where they secretly distributing propaganda literature done by Jose Rizal and by Marcelo H. del Pilar, during a propaganda movement in Spain, inside the campus. Both became close friends, Diwas and Teodoro Plata boarded at the house of Bonifacio in Tondo, Manila.
He was the clerk in a district court of Quiapo, after finishing his studies. While serving in the court, he joined the propaganda movement of Jose Rizal called La Liga Filipina which aims to educate th Filipino about the Spanish regime. He was the secretary of the council in Trozo, Tondo, under the presidency of Andres Bonifacio. After establishing the movement, Rizal was arrested and was deported to Dapitan where he was exiled. Andres Bonifacio, Ladislao Diwa, Teodoro Plata, Deodato Arellano and Valentin Diaz initaiated the founding of the Katipunan. All agreed to the proposal, they all gathered around a round table lamp, they performed the famous blood compact and singned the membership paper with their own blood.
Diwa, adopted the name "Balete", together with Bonifacio and Plata they formed the first triangle of the Katipunan. He was the then appointed as the councilor and continued in the propagation of the Katipunan movement.
In August 1896, the brotherhood was discovered by the Spaniards, Diwa was arrested in Betis, Bacolor, Pampanga. He was then taken to Fort Santiago where he was imprisoned and totured. Shared cell with Teodoro Plata who was shot in Bagumbayan, Diwa was lucky his life was spared and was freed in exchange for another Spanish prisoners that was in the hands of the revolutionaries. After his release, he immediately went to Cavite and joined the revolutionary troops of Mariano Trias. Diwa became active in combat and was responsible in the surrender of the Spanish forces, he was promoted to Colonel under the revolutionary army. He was the first civil governor of Cavite when the First Philippine Republic was declared.
After Admiral George Dewey fleet defeated the Spanish Navy off the Coast of Cavite, Diwa was promoted to Colonel after the proclamation of Philippine Independence on June 12, 1898.
The Philippine-American broke out, he joined Gen. Trias for the second time and was appointed secretary. They were responsible in the number of insurgents in Cavite, but when Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo was captured on March 23, 1899. Both surrendered to the Americans in Indang, Cavite. He was given a pardon and later named clerk of the court of the First Instance of Cavite. He opened up a school together with his fellow citizen and called it Ligaya College. After retirement as a teacher, he spends his time in his farms in Tagaytay and Mendez, Cavite. He died of nephritis on March 12, 1930, The Caridad Elementary School in Cavite City was renamed Ladislao Diwa Elementary School in his honor in November 1964.
- Quirino, Carlos. Who's who in Philippine History. Manila: Tahanan Books, 1995.
- Ladislao Diwa (accessed on September 12, 2007)
- National Historical Institute. Filipinos in History 5 vols. (Manila: National Historical Institute, 1989)