The following accounts, translated by Virginia Palma-Bonifacio, are taken from The Trial of Andres Bonifacio: The Original Documents in Tagalog Text and English Translation, published by the Ateneo de Manila University Press in partnership with the National Library of the Philippines, 1963. The accounts trace the progress and findings of the investigation into the conduct of Andres Bonifacio and his brothers, after the Tejeros Convention proceedings were annulled by Bonifacio.

The version of events of Bonifacio and others can be found in The Trial of Andres Bonifacio: providing a counterpoint to the allegations and judgments arrived at in the trial.

NORIEL’S COVERING LETTER

[1] Your Excellency, Mr. President:

I respectfully submit to your honor the following report given me by Colonel Agapito Bonzon whom we ordered to proceed to Indang accom­panied by our soldiers to confer with the Supremo.

When he met the Supremo, he tried to convince him of the sincerity of his purpose by conveying to him your kind invitation. All the sweet and friendly words of persuasion were of no avail. Besides refusing the invitation, the Supremo acted in the hostile manner of an enemy [1a] and ordered his men to fire. Our men were forced to fire back, and a bloody encounter between Filipinos followed which he [Bonzon] tried hard to avoid, not wishing to fight with his brothers. But at the moment, he deemed it his duty to fight for the defense of our men, which resulted in the death of a rifleman from Imus, and a boloman from Gargano1 on our side. We, however, killed a brother of the Supremo. And we left the Supremo himself in a serious condition due to a bad wound in the throat at the Indang tribunal. They also held as captives another brother of the Supremo and twenty other armed men.

In [2] view of what happened, your exceeding kindness2 will know how to judge the extent of the malicious and treacherous intent3 of Andres Bonifacio.

May God bless you for many more years.

Victory,1 April 28, 1897.

General of the Brigade:

(SGD) MARIANO NORIEL


AGUINALDO’S ENDORSEMENT

[2a] Naik, April 28, 1897.

Order — Forward the attached letter to the War Department in order that a Judge may be designated who will investigate the contents thereof.

An officer with the rank of Colonel should be appointed to undertake this investigation.

(SGD) E. AGUINALDO

[In left margin, an illegible rubber stamp but for the word MAGDALO]

[hr]

LETTER OF ENDORSEMENT

[3] His Excellency, General of the Brigade:

I am forwarding to your office the attached letter with my order for its compliance.

May God guard you many years. Victory, April 28, 1897.

The President:

(SGD) EMILIO AGUINALDO


GARCIA APPOINTED INVESTIGATOR

[In left margin, rubric] Naik, Victory, April 28, 1897.

In compliance with foregoing letter and the order of the President, forward all documents to Colonel [3a] Pantaleon Garcia who has been designated sole Judge to investigate the culprits.

(SGD) MARIANO NORIEL


MAKAPAGAL APPOINTED SECRETARY

[4] I, Pantaleon Garcia, Colonel of the Army, following the wording of the foregoing order of the President, and in compliance therewith, do hereby appoint Major Lazaro Makapagal Secretary in the investigation that will be undertaken. Aware of the seriousness and the difficulty of the task, he took the corresponding oath and promised to perform his duty faithfully.

In view of the foregoing, I do hereby order the appearance of Colonel Agapito Bonzon and all the persons whose names are mentioned in the letter of the General of the Brigade and the Secretary to make an inventory of all the arms confiscated from the soldiers of the Supremo, Andres Boni­facio, showing their initials and trademark.

Attesting to the truth of all the above-mentioned, we affixed our signatures below in the Municipality of Naik, this 29th day of April, 1897.

(SGD) PANTALEON GARCIA THE SECRETARY

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


PRISONERS ORDERED TO APPEAR

[4a] Attention — On this 29th day of April, 1897, request was made to bring in person all the people detained in jail as well as the appear­ance of Colonel Agapito Bonzon. I, the Secretary, certify to its truth.

(SGD) MAKAPAGAL


INVENTORY OF ARMS

Attention — Following the order of the Investigating Officer, an inventory of the confiscated firearms was immediately prepared:

Mauser L = 2798 plate bearing initial A.B. removed. Mauser K = 2894 with additional No. 1, plate bearing initials H.B.

Remington No. 7537, plate bearing initials A.B. removed.

Remington No. 1,200, plate bearing initials A.B. removed.

Remington No. 12620, iron plate of the butt and trigger removed.

Remington No. 2085

Remington No. D610

Remington No. 3279, A.B. removed.

Remington No. 3580, Magdalo removed.

Remington No. 23871 = 16, A.B. removed.

Remington No. 3302 A.B.

Remington No. 3379 plate bearing A.B. removed.

Remington No. 9075, plate bearing A.B. at the trigger removed.

Remington No. 38384 Madalo.

Remington without plate number removed.

[5] Remington, English make

One shotgun with double barrel (?)

One shotgun, center fire

Two shotguns with double barrel

One shotgun, Saun

Four Arabucos and one Mactan5

One Juan Estrella

One shotgun, center fire

On this 29th day of April, 1897, I, the undersigned Secretary certify to its correctness.

(SGD) MAKAPAGAL


BENITO TORRES

Investigation conducted on the person of Benito Torres at Army Headquarters in the Municipality of Naik, on this 29th day of April, 1897. In the presence of the Investigating Officer and his Secretary, there appeared Benito Torres, married, 21 years old, native of San Fernando, La Union, who gave the following testimony:

That he was detained in jail [5a] since the night before, as a result of the encounter between the government forces and the forces of the Supremo to which he belonged; that the encounter took place at nine o’clock in the morning, two men were killed on the government’s side and on his side, Ciriaco Bonifacio, the brother of the Supremo was killed; that Ciriaco Bonifacio was the source of all the trouble when he started firing first; that when the declarant heard of the encounter, he came out to meet the government forces to persuade them to settle the trouble amicably, but Ciriaco fired, resulting in the death of two government men; that the dec­larant was wounded in the arm by a stray bullet fired at the Supremo while he (the Supremo) was aiming his revolver; that the forces of the Supremo ceased fire on the advice of the declarant; that as a result of the encounter, Ciriaco Bonifacio was killed and Andres Bonifacio was wounded. The forces of the Supremo consisted of thirty-five men, twenty of them [6] armed with Remingtons, two with Mausers and thirteen with locally made guns; that Pedro Giron was the lieutenant-cotonel, Juan Liwanag lieultenant, and a man with pock-marked face0 named Rojas captain; that he did not know the names of the sergeants, the corporals and the privates; that he had no knowledge of the sources of such firearms, but he knew that in Balara,7 Andres Bonifacio had many arms; that he knew they were leaving but their destination was unknown; that he did not know there was an organized government in this province; that his reason for meeting the government forces was for the sake of friendship, besides recognizing fa­miliar faces among them; that he had no knowledge of the root of the incident at the Indang tribunal because he was not present there. He, however, gave out the information that there were five prisoners whose heads, eyebrows and eyelids were ordered shaveds by the late Ciriaco; that he did not know where their food [6a] came from.

In testimony of the foregoing, after the declarant had read the same, because he did not know how to write his name, he requested Nicolas Torres to sign this document in his stead, after my signature as Colonel Investigating Officer and my Secretary who affixed his signature certifying to its correctness.

(SGD) GARCIA

(SGD) NICOLAS TORRES

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


PROCOPIO BONIFACIO

Investigation of Procopio Bonifacio

At Army Headquarters in Naik, on this 29th day of April, 1897, Pro­copio Bonifacio, single, 24 years old, a native of Tondo, Manila, appeared before the Colonel Investigating Officer and his Secretary and made the following statements:

[7] That he was in prison since the night because he was arrested by government soldiers. He did not know the reason for his arrest.

Question — Where was he arrested and why were there blood stains on his clothes? He replied that he was arrested in the trenches of Limbon. The blood stains came from the wound of his upper lip when a soldier hit him with the butt of his gun. He was surprised at the attack because he did not fight back and he immediately surrendered his fire­arms.

Question — Did he know of the existence of an organized revolutionary government in this province? He replied that he had not even heard of it.

Question — Why did he know that the soldiers who arrested him were those of the government? He replied that he learned about it when they passed by the house where he stayed temporarily.

Question — Who were the other persons who frequented the temporary residence in Limbon besides himself and his two brothers [7a] Ciriaco and Andres Bonifacio? He answered: Diego Mojica, Captain Martin Medina and two others, Domingo and Ramon from Malabon who happened to drop in.

Question — How many soldiers and arms did his brother Andres Bonifacio have? He answered that he did not know the number but he knew that they came from Balara.

Question — Did he know that some of his brother’s guns and those of his soldiers came from the government? He answered that he did not know but that Pedro Giron may have carried one.

Question — Who fired first during the encounter that took place the pre­vious morning? He answered that those soldiers from the government fired first.

At this juncture, the Judge immediately ordered the appearance of Benito Torres to confront Procopio Bonifacio regarding a point in his last statement. Benito Torres was asked in the presence of Pro­copio Bonifacio and he declared that the first who fired was [8] Ciria­co Bonifacio. After hearing the answer of Benito Torres, Procopio alleged that he was not sure who really started firing first because he was in another trench about 30 meters away. The Judge ordered Benito taken out. He resumed questioning Procopio about the two shots that killed two government soldiers to which he replied that he did not know anything about it.

Question — What kind of guns did his brother Ciriaco and Andres carry? He answered that Ciriaco carried a Mauser and Andres a revolver.

Question — About the number of soldiers in his brother Andres Boni­facio’s force, he answered that he calculated the number as consisting of eleven men, besides Captain Flaviano Rojas, Major Benito Torres and Lieutenant-Colonel Pedro Giron. That said officers had no arms except Pedro who had a revolver.

Question — Did he know the reason why they were [8a] with their men in Limbon since the election of the President of the Revolutionary Go­vernment? He answered that they were only waiting for the guide who would lead them to Balara. They did not know that there was a President elected.

Question — Did he know how many times he and his brothers had written the government officers and soldiers to inform them of their desire to join them and sell them their arms? He replied that he and his brothers never wrote them.

Question — How many times did they hold a meeting in Limbon to over­throw the Revolutionary Government in the province and who at­tended such meetings? He answered that they never had a meeting in Limbon except last Tuesday when Diego Mojica dropped in at their temporary residence when the house was encircled by the govern­ment forces.

[9] The investigation ended here. After Procopio Bonifacio had read this statement he affixed his signature after that of the Colonel In­vestigating Officer and the Secretary who signed and certified to its correctness.

(SGD) GARCIA

(SGD) P.BONIFACIO

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


ORDER TO ARREST BONIFACIO’S MEN

Army Headquarters, Naik, April 29, 1897.

On this date the Colonel Investigating Officer issued letters to all Army detachments requesting them to arrest all Andres Bonifacio’s men who did not appear in the investigation. Similar letters were sent to the municipalities of the Revolutionary Government, and that I, as Secretary, [9a] certify correct.

(SGD) GARCIA

(SGD) MAKAPAGAL


SIX MEN ARRESTED

On this 30th day of April, 1897, at Army Headquarters in Naik, six of Andres Bonifacio’s men who reported to the Colonel Investigating Officer were received, together with other companions. I, the Secretary, certify that this is correct.

(SGD) GARCIA

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


NICOLAS DE GUZMAN

Testimony of Nicolas de Guzman

[10] At Army Headquarters in Naik, on this 30th day of April, 1897, Nicolas Guzman, single, 25 years old, a clerk who could read and write, native of Bulacan, appeared before the Colonel Investigating Officer and promised to tell the truth and nothing but the truth:

Question — Did he know of the existence of an organized Revolutionary Government with an armed force with jurisdiction all over the pro­vince? He answered that he knew of its existence and that of its re­gular army.

Question — Did Andres Bonifacio have any authority in the Revolutionary Government in the province and did he have a right to maintain an army? He answered that he did not know if he [Bonifacio] had any authority.

Question — The number of guns and soldiers that Andres Bonifacio had. He answered that he did not know the number of his [Bonifacio’s] guns and soldiers, [10a] because he and a certain Rafael — supposed­ly one of Andres Bonifacio’s soldiers—did not stay with them in the same trenches that they were guarding, inasmuch as since their sepa­ration from the force under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Ti-cong, they never mingled with Andres Bonifacio’s soldiers except dur­ing meals. Their only purpose in following Bonifacio wherever he went was their desire to return to Balara.

Question — Did he know of any authority given to Andres Bonifacio by the Revolutionary Government within the jurisdiction of the province to stay in Limbon and recruit and organize his rifle- and bolomen. He answered he knew of no such authority granted to Andres Bonifacio to stay in Limbon and to recruit men for his army.

Question — Did he know whether Andres Bonifacio, Ciriaco and Procopio frequently held meetings in their temporary residence in Limbon and who were the people who attended such meetings? After understanding the question well, he answered that [11] he was unable to say any­thing about the matter because he lived quite far from Andres Boni­facio’s house. That he sought Andres Bonifacio only when he was already in Indang due to his desire to return home to Balara with him.

Question — Did he have any knowledge or information that Andres Bonifa­cio was enticing government officers and soldiers to join them bringing their arms and promising them material aid? He answered that he knew nothing about it.

Question — Did he know about Andres Bonifacio’s writing the government officers and soldiers and did he know the contents of the letters? He answered that he knew nothing and heard nothing about such letters.

Question — Did he know the reason why Andres Bonifacio was recruiting men for an armed force of his own? He answered that he did not know the reason.

Question — In his opinion, will the men that Andres Bonifacio was re­cruiting be used to overthrow the government and finally assassinate the President?

[11a] He declared that he had no personal knowledge about the matter.

After this statement was read to him, he confirmed it by affixing his signature below after that of the Investigating Officer. I, the Secretary, certify that this is correct.

K/(SGD) GARCIA

(SGD) NICOLAS GUZMAN

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


RAFAEL NAN

Testimony of Rafael Nan

At Army Headquarters in Naik, on this 30th day of April, 1897, Rafael Nan, single, 20 years old, student who could read and write, native of Intramuros, Manila, appeared before the Colonel Investigat­ing Officer for questioning, promised to tell the truth and nothing but the truth and made the following statements:

Question — Did he know that there was an organized Revolutionary Government [12] under the jurisdiction of this province and that such Government had an army? After understanding the question well, he answered that he did not know. He knew, however, of the govern­ment and army that existed in Imus before the Spanish occupation.

Question — Did he know if Andres Bonifacio had any authority in the Re­volutionary Government and the right to have an army? After under­standing the question well, he answered that he did not know of any such authority. He only knew that he was the Supremo but he did not know of his right to have an army.

Question — The number of arms and soldiers that Andres Bonifacio had. He answered that he did not know the number of arms and soldiers because Nicolas de Guzman and he lived about ten meters away from Andres’ house and they joined him only during meals.

Question — Did Andres Bonifacio have any permission [12a] from the gov­ernment3 to stay in Limbon within the jurisdiction of the province and to recruit men and organize an army. He answered that he had no knowledge of such permission.

Question — Did he know whether Andres Bonifacio was frequently holding meetings in his temporaiy residence and who were the persons who attended such meetings? After understanding the question well, he answered that he did not know of such meetings and had not seen any other people going to their house in Limbon.

Question — Did he know about Andres Bonifacio’s writing the government officers and soldiers informing them of his desire to join and sell them his arms? After understanding the question well, he answered he had no knowledge of it nor had he heard about it.

Question — Told that Andres Bonifacio wrote letters to the leaders or soldiers here and what the contents were, he answered that he did not know anything about the contents of such letters.

[13] Question — Did he know the reason why Andres Bonifacio was re­cruiting men and organizing an army of his own? He anwered that he did not know he was recruiting men, but he knew that those men were his old followers.

Question — Did he know that Andres Bonifacio had the intention of over­throwing the government and assassinating His Excellency, the Pres­ident? He answered that he did not know of any intention of over­throwing the government or killing the President.

Question — About the trademark of the firearms that he carried when he followed Andres Bonifacio, he answered that he carried a Remington and his companion Nicolas de Guzman carried also a Remington.

Question — Was he in the trenches when the government men visited Limbon where they were staying, and what happened there? He an­swered that he did not know what happened there because he was not present on the day they came. [13a] He declared that he heard a gunshot, but he was not sure where it came from and where it was aimed. After reading before him this testimony, he affixed his sig­nature after that of the Colonel Investigating Officer and I, the Sec­retary, certify that it is correct.

K/(SGD) GARCIA

(SGD) RAFAEL NAN

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


NARCISO TIOLO

Testimony of Narciso Tiolo

At Army Headquarters in Naik, on this 30th day of April, 1897, Narciso Tiolo married, 25 years old, laborer, native of Binondo, Ma­nila, who could read and write, appeared before the Colonel Investi­gating Officer for questioning and gave the following testimony:

Question — Did he know that there was an organized10 [14] government in this province with a regular army. After understanding the question well, he answered in the affirmative and that the recognized leader was Emilio Aguinaldo.

He was further asked about other things embraced in the docu­ment which was the subject of the investigation, and he answered that Andres Bonifacio had no authority in this jurisdiction and that he was not given any position in the revolutionary government; he did not know whether Andres Bonifacio, his brothers and their fol­lowers were holding meetings; he did not know about the number of arms in their possession because he was not actually a member of the armed force of Andres Bonifacio. He followed Andres Bonifacio be­cause of his desire to reach Manila. He said that he had nothing to say about the encounter because he and his housemates were far from the trenches where Bonifacio was. And when he heard [14a] gun shots, he immediately took his child and they went to hide in the forest. At this juncture, the investigation was ended by the examiner. The witness signed the statement after it was explained to him fol­lowing the signatures of the Investigating Officer and the Secretary.

K/(SGD) GARCIA

(SGD) NARCISO TIOLO

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


JULIAN AGUILA

Testimony of Julian Aguila bolo-armed soldier

At Army Headquarters in Naik, this 30th day of April, 1897, the witness, married, 33 years old, collector, who could read and write and a native of San Jose, Batangas, appeared before the Investigating Officer to testify in the investigation and promised to tell the truth:

Question — If he knew that there was a revolutionary government [15] with an army; if Andres Bonifacio enjoyed any authority therein; whe­ther his brothers, his force and he were given permission to stay in the place called Limbon by said government. After understanding the question well, he answered that he knew there was a revolutionary government with an army. He doubted whether Andres Bonifacio had any authority in the province. He did not know if he had any per­mission to stay in Limbon from the highest authority.

Question — Did Andres Bonifacio hold meetings in Limbon, who were present, what dates were they held, and what subjects were discussed? After understanding the question well, he answered: if he remem­bered correctly, Bonifacio and his brothers conferred firstly with Diego Mojica and the following day with Santos Nocon, but he knew nothing of the subject discussed. [15a] And he believed that the persons who were there were mere visitors.

Question — Did the witness know that Andres Bonifacio, his brothers and his followers had any malicious intentions against the revolutionary government? After understanding the question well, he answered that he could not ascertain if they had any bad intention because his duty was to get palay from a place known as Buenavista and after stating that he had no more to add or deduct from his testimony, the Inves­tigating Officer closed the hearing. At this juncture, Julian Aguila recalled that on Wednesday, the 28th of the current month, he heard two gun shots from the side opposite him, and he suspected that they were fired by soldiers of the revolutionary government because he had already heard rumors about it. He added that there were also five persons, natives of Tansa who were prisoners of Col. Pedro Giron, who was the trusted man of Andres Bonifacio, and whose heads were shaved by order of Ciriaco Bonifacio, brother of Andres, [16] includ­ing the eyelashes and the eyebrows, remaining under their custody for four days until the day of the encounter. After certifying to his statement, the witness affixed his signature below with the signature of the Colonel Investigator and the Secretary.

K/(SGD) GARCIA

(SGD) JULIAN AGUILA

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


CAYETANO LOPEZ

Testimony of Cayetano Lopez of the Armed Forces

At Army Headquarters in Naik this 30th day of April, 1897, Cayetano Lopez, single, 20 years old, driver12 who could not read and write, native of Magalang, Pampanga, appeared before the Colonel Investigator and promised to tell the whole truth.

[16a] Question — Did he know that there was a revolutionary government in the province with its organized army; whether Andres Bonifacio had any authority in said territory and whether said government had given permission to Andres Bonifacio, his brothers and his army to remain in that place called Limbon? After understanding the ques­tion well, he answered that he did not know there was a revolutionary government in that province and that he recognized only Andres Bo­nifacio who was the Supremo (unworthy as he is)13 And even if such government existed, he did not know if they were given permis­sion to stay in Limbon.

Question — Did he know the number of arms they had? He answered that there were 35. Most of them were Remington guns. There were 2 Mauser automatic pistols and the rest were guns which had to be set to fire.1‘ The arms were under the custody of Major Benito Tor­res.

Question — Did Andres Bonifacio with his brothers hold meetings [17] and who were present and what subject was discussed? After understand­ing the question well, he answered that he saw Santos Nocon and Silvestre Domingo in conference with them, but did not know what they talked about.

Question — Did he know that Andres Bonifacio and his followers had any intention of destroying the revolutionary government. He answered that he did not know anything about it because he lived far from the house that Andres Bonifacio occupied.

Question — Did he know what happened on Wednesday morning of the 28th of that month? He answered that he had no knowledge of what happened because although he heard gun shots he did not know where they came from nor towards what direction (they were aimed).

Question — Did he know there were prisoners, how many were there and whose prisoners were they? He answered there were five prisoners [17a] among his companions, and that said prisoners were natives of Tansa whose heads, eyebrows and eyelashes were ordered shaved by Ciriaco Bonifacio. The Colonel Investigator closed the hearing, and after the testimony was explained to the witness who did not know how to read and write, he did not sign the document and requested Luis Ve-lasco to sign in his name, following the signatures of the Investigating Officer and the secretary certifying to its correctness.

K/(SGD) GARCIA

(SGD) LUIS VELASCO

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


BIBIANO ROJAS

Testimony of the soldiers who appeared before the Investigator

[18] At Army Headquarters in Naik on this 30th day of April, 1897, there appeared before the Investigating Officer and his secretary, Bibiano Rojas, a follower of the Supremo, single, a native of Guiginto (Bulacan), 27 years old, who made the following statements:

Question — Did he know that there was a revolutionary government in the province with an army? He answered that he knew there was a government and an army.

Question — Did Andres Bonifacio have any authority in the revolutionary province and if he had any power to organize any army? He answered that Andres Bonifacio had no authority at all.

Question — How many arms and soldiers did Bonifacio have? [18a] He answered that Andres Bonifacio had 29 guns, 18 of which were Re­mington and 11 automatic pistols. There were many soldiers but he did not know the exact number, and only 29 had guns.

Question — Did Andres Bonifacio have permission from the revolutionary government to remain in Limbon and organize armies? He answered that Andres Bonifacio did not have any permission.

Question — Did Andres Bonifacio and his brothers frequently hold meet­ings in their temporary house and who were present at the meetings? He answered that they held frequent meetings and those who were always present at the meetings were Diego Mojica, one named Do­mingo Santos and others whom he did not know because the witness is not a native of this place.

Question — Did he know the subject of such meetings in the temporary house of the brothers Bonifacio? [19] To which he answered that he could not tell because they were talking in whispers. He said, however that Andres Bonifacio gave orders to his men in the pre­sence of his brothers to remain inside the trenches at 12 o’clock noon of that Tuesday, inasmuch as the soldiers here of the govern­ment, who were their enemy, would make an inspection. True, the revolutionary government forces arrived early the next morning. Bonifacio’s soldiers did not obey the order to shout “halt!” at their arrival and to fire if they did not stop after three shouts of “halt!” When the government soldiers were nearing the trenches, the declar­ant met them and said “hindi kalaban” [not enemies]. The soldiers demanded that they give up their arms, to which they immediately acceded. But when the soldiers were already inside the trenches, the three Bonifacio brothers, Andres, Procopio and Ciriaco, resisted. In­deed, Ciriaco fired the first shot [19a] that almost hit the declarant and killed two government soldiers. One of the government soldiers returned the shot fired by Ciriaco.

Question — Did Andres Bonifacio give orders to fire and who actually fired? After understanding the question well, he answered that he did not hear any order and that he was not sure who fired. All he knew was when Ciriaco fired the first shot, the bullet passed near him. The questioning was terminated at this juncture. After the statement had been read and found correct, the declarant signed the testimony after that of the Colonel Judge and the Secretary.

K/(SGD) GARCIA

(SGD) BIBIANO ROJAS

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


PEDRO GIRON

 

Testimony of Pedro Giron

[20] At Army Headquarters in Naik, 30th day of April, 1897 — Before the Investigating Officer and the Secretary appeared Pedro Gi­ron, single, 27 years of age, a native of Baliwag (Bulacan) who made the following statements:

Question — Did the declarant know that there was a government in the province with an army? To which he replied that he knew that there was a government and an army.

Question — Did Andres Bonifacio have any authority to stay in the province and did he have the right to have an army? To which the declarant an­swered that he had no authority that he knew of nor the right to have an army.

Question — Did he know the number of arms and soldiers Bonifacio had? He answered that he did not know the number of [20a] arms and soldiers because even though he was considered a follower of Bonifacio, he refused to associate with him’5 in order to avoid trouble be­cause he knew that Bonifacio had bad intentions towards the govern­ment since the incident at Tansa in connection with the election of the President and other officials. He said that one day, the date he could not remember, in the town of [San Francisco de] Malabon, Andres Bonifacio told him: “Let us get out of here because the officials are not on good terms with us. It is better for you to join me. You will gain thereby because, without a doubt, he will not have the power because I was the founder of the uprising for freedom.”” One day the whole force from Tansa arrived. After they had stayed for about twenty days, [21] Andres Bonifacio sent for him. On his arrival, he was told: “What is going to happen to us? Inasmuch as I have the po­wer, Kapitan Emilio Aguinaldo necessarily has to remain under me. If he disobeys I will have him killed.” He was given PlO as compensa­tion to kill Kapitan Emilio Aguinaldo in case he did not abide by the authority of Andres Bonifacio. He was further assured that he would have everything he wished for if he did as he was told, but be sensed trouble;17 so he left Andres Bonifacio’s company and went to Buenavista, within the jurisdiction of Malabon, under a bamboo tree (with the Malabon troops) where he was calling and meeting some infantry men who were his townmates and friends who came from the town of Silang, Dasmarinas, Malabon and Tansa. He also knew that Andres Bonifacio [21a] was recruiting men because in case they were defeated they would just get out of the town; in case they won, they would stay and everybody would certainly fall under his power and authority. This is the reason why he was inviting the officers of the government army to join him. He declared also that many of Boni­facio’s men were advising him to leave the province to avoid trouble. Andres Bonifacio answered that if they were to leave the town, it would give the impression that they were afraid and were all willing to submit to some officials of this place,

Question — Did the brothers of Andres Bonifacio, Ciriaco and Procopio, have any knowledge or connived with their brother in connection with the facts alleged by the declarant? The declarant answered in the negative.

Question — Did the declarant know [22] the days that Andres Boni­facio held meetings in the town of Limbon, who attended the meet­ings and what they talked about in said meetings? After understand­ing the question well, he answered that meetings were held but he did not know the people who attended them because he was not a native of the place. He did not know what they talked about.

Question — Had he known about the source of food supply of Bonifacio’s men and who were the people providing the food? He answered that he did not know anything about this.

Question — If he had anything more to add to what he had already tes­tified? To which he added that last Wednesday he was in Limbon very early in the morning at the time of the encounter between the government troops and the three Bonifacio brothers and that he stood between them and asked them not to fire but Ciriaco refused and instead [22a] fired killing two government men; and sensing after­wards that it was impossible to stop the fight, he shouted: “Brothers, we are not enemies—let us find out who refused to submit to peaceful means.” At this point, the questioning was stopped. After reading the testimony to the declarant who found it correct, it was signed by the Investigating Officer followed by the declarant and by the Sec­retary who certified it. —Between the line—one day—at Limbon— includes—.

K/(SGD) GARCIA (SGD) PEDRO GIRON

Palaso’*

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


DOMINGO DENLASO

 

Testimony of Domingo Denlaso

At Army Headquarters, Naik, this 30th day of April, 1897, be­fore the Colonel Judge and the Secretary, there appeared Domingo Denlaso, single, 24 years of age, a native of [23] Malabon, Tambo-bong, who made the following” statement:

Question — Did he know that in this province there was a revolutionary government and army? To which he answered in the affirmative.

Question — Did Andres Bonifacio and his brothers Ciriaco and Procopio have authority from the revolutionary government? He answered that he was not sure if they had any authority. The declarant said that frequent meetings were held in the house of Andres Bonifacio but he did not know what they discussed nor the people who attended the meetings, because he was a stranger in the place. He did not know the number of arms nor the nuniber of soldiers with guns and without guns. He did not know whether Andres Bonifacio and his brothers had the permission of the revolutionary government to stay in Limbon and organize an army. He did not know the sources of the guns that [23a] were confiscated from the declarant and from the other men of Andres Bonifacio. The declarant said that he was not in the place when the government troops and the Bonifacio bro­thers exchanged fire. He was on the trail to Indang. The hearing ad­journed at this juncture. After the statement was read to the de­clarant which he affirmed, but because he did not know how to read and write, Pedro Malinis signed in his place after the Colonel Judge had affixed his signature followed by the Secretary who certified that the document was correct.

K/(SGD) GARCIA (SGD) PEDRO MALINIS

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


DOMINGO SAN JUAN

 

Testimony of Domingo San Juan

At Army Headquarters in Naik this 30th day of April, 1897, before the Colonel Judge and the Secretary, there appeared Domingo San Juan, married, 42 years old, a native of Binondo, Manila, who made the following statements:

[24] Question — Did he know that there was a government and an army in the province? To which he answered in the affirmative.

Question — Did Andres Bonifacio and his two brothers Ciriaco and Proco-pio have any authority or permission from the revolutionary govern­ment? To which he answered that as far as he knew they had no per­mission or authority.

Question — Did he know how many arms and soldiers Bonifacio had? He answered that there were 28 guns but he did not know the number of men.

Question — Did he know if Andres Bonifacio and his brothers had any per­mission from this government to stay in Limbon and recruit soldiers for his army. After understanding the questions well, he declared that as far as he knew, they had no permission to stay in Limbon and recruit soldiers.

Question — Did he know the source of Andres Bonifacio’s and his soldiers’ supply of food? To which he answered that he and his companions [24a] got their food supply from Palanit, in the town of Malabon, but he did not know the owner.

Question — What could he say about the exchange of fire that took place in Limbon on Wednesday? He answered that on that day he was at the north side of the trench when the government soldiers passed by, and was asked if he was going to resist. He answered no and his gun and those of his companions were confiscated. The government forces then went inside the place where Andres Bonifacio and his two brothers were. After a short while, he heard the firing of guns. He could not say who fired first but that, according to information from the government soldiers, it was Ciriaco Bonifacio who fired first. The declarant did not know whether meetings were held in Bonifacio’s house because he lived far from the place. He did not know the source of the arms because he had just joined the Supremo. [25] The hearing was adjourned. After reading the statement to the de­clarant which he affirmed, he signed after the Colonel Judge and the Secretary who certified it correct.

K/(SGD) GARCIA (SGD) DOMINGO SAN JUAN

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


GERVACIO SANTIAGO

 

Testimony of Gervacio Santiago

At Army Headquarters, Naik, this 30th day of April, 1897, be­fore the Colonel Judge and the Secretary, there appeared Gervacio Santiago, widower, 21 years of age, native of Pasig (Manila) who gave the following testimony:

Question — If the declarant knew there was a revolutionary government and an army in the province, to which he answered in the affirmative.

Question — If he knew that Andres Bonifacio had any authority [25a] from this government, to which he answered that he had none.

Question — If the declarant knew about other incidents under considera­tion in the investigation. The declarant stated that he did not know if Andres Bonifacio and his brothers had permission from the govern­ment to stay in Limbon and recruit soldiers. Bonifacio had 34 guns including the two Mauser rifles. He did not know where the guns came from. He had nothing to say about the encounter in Limbon except that in the early morning of Wednesday he heard the firing of guns in the place where Andres and his brothers were, as a result of which Ciriaco Bonifacio and two government soldiers were killed and Andres Bonifacio was wounded. He learned about this when a soldier of the government called him from where he was and that is the reason why he could not give a detailed account of it. The source of food supply [26] was Tanza where Andres Bonifacio placed his orders. The declarant did not know the brand of the guns used by Andres Bonifacio and his brothers; no meeting was held in the house of Andres Bonifacio as far as he knew, and there were no strange visitors. The hearing was adjourned. After the declarant had heard his statements and because he did not know how to read and write, he requested Luis Velasco to sign in his place after the signature of the Investigating Officer and the Secretary who certified to its cor­rectness.

K/(SGD) GARCIA (SGD) LUIS VELASCO

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


ANDRES BONIFACIO

 

[27] In the municipality of Maragondon on this 4th day of May, 1897, before the Investigating Officer appeared the person of Andres Boni­facio, 33 years old, married and a native of Tondo, Manila, with occupa­tion as President of the Revolution and head of the Katipunan. In the course of the investigation he was asked if he knew of the existence of a revolutionary government in this province to which he answered that he did not know.

Asked if he knew of the existence of an army, he answered that there was an army and that there were many heads, like General Santiago [Al­varez], General Emilio [Aguinaldo]) General Pio [del Pilar] and Gen­eral [Artemio] Ricarte.10

Asked whether he wielded any power or authority in the government of this province, he answered that he could not say if he had any power or authority in the province because he did not even know of the establish­ment of a new government.

Asked whether he had the permission of the provincial government to remain or stay in Limbon within the Municipality of Indang, he an­swered that the Minister of the Magdiwang [Government] knew when he left the Municipality of Indang on his way to Manila, but that due to the absence of a guide [27a] he was forced to stay in Limbon.

Asked whether he was authorized by the provincial government to organize an army of bolomen and riflemen in said barrio of Limbon, he answered that because he was not informed of the existence of any gov­ernment, he did not know whom to advise concerning the group which he had formed for the service of the province. It was the President of the Magdiwang government who caused the return to him of these sol­diers.

Asked about the number of guns he was keeping in Limbon, he an­swered that he had contributed 30 guns for use in this province, but was able to take only 17 Remington rifles and a few of other makes.

Asked whether the guns were marked Magdalo, he answered that he was not aware of it, but knew they were his own because their holders had told him so.

Asked who among his men was in charge of erasing gun marks, he answered that there was nobody in charge of it.

Asked if he knew Pedro Giron, Benito Torres, Pio del Pilar and Mo­desto Ritual, he answered [28] that he knew all of them.

Asked if he could recall having sent letters to said persons inviting them to bring their guns and join him, he answered that he did not write to them.

Asked if he held meetings during his stay in Limbon, and who were the people he conferred with, he answered that he had not conferred with any people other than his companions.

Asked if he could recall the number of times he met Pedro Giron regarding the assassination of the President of the government, he an­swered that he had never talked to him about it.

Asked if he could recall having given money to officials of the army for the purpose of their joining him, he answered that in the name of the Magdiwang government, true to the promise of the Minister of Finance and of the Minister of War, Diego Mojica and Ariston Villanueva, the officers and soldiers who valiantly fought in the battles of Noveleta and Malabon and the group named Balard were rewarded with two hundred [28a] pesos in the presence of a big crowd; he advised the awardees to distribute the money among their soldiers and thereafter to inform Gen­eral Aguinaldo about it. Other than this, he had not given money to any one.

Asked if he and his brothers always conferred with Diego Mojica, Ariston Villanueva, Silvestre Domingo and one named Santos [Nocon], he answered that he remembered Silvestre Domingo, Santos and Diego Mojica pass by his place on their way to Buenavista, but he did not en­gage them in a conference except in a brief exchange of salutations which is customary among friends, in the presence of the owner of the house and of the inhabitants of the locality.

Asked whether he had given orders to his two brothers and the guards at the trenches to fire immediately at the government soldiers if they re­fused to stop after shouting three times, he replied that when the soldiers arrived in his house [29] he was surprised to see them surrounding the front and rear sides, which act was witnessed by all the inhabitants of that barrio; that said soldiers were under the command, according to in­formation, of a colonel who asked permission to talk to him; and that said officer went up his house and informed him that government soldiers were surrounding the house because of a report from the town that they were to be ambushed by the declarant’s soldiers at the pass they were taking, but that he [the colonel] found out said report was not true be­cause he saw there was not a single man waiting at the pass, for all the people were found in their respective houses; when said officer requested permission to post a guard in the declarant’s house, he immediately con­sented, to show that he did not attach any importance to the rumors which he thought were only fabricated by his enemies. In fact, he did not let the officer leave without their eating together and when the officer said he was leaving for an inspection of a certain place the declarant gave him packages of cigarettes to take along. [29a] They separated cordially, but soon after he had left, one of the declarant’s men reported that the door of the trenches at the exit side was ordered closed by an officer of the government who had passed by with instructions not to allow any of the declarant’s men to go out; the man further reported that their soldiers who came out of the trenches were disarmed; the houses were searched and the occupants who were identified as the declarant’s followers were held. In view of the report and in order to inquire into the motive of the confiscation of firearms and the arrest of his men, the declarant went to the place which had been ordered closed and requested several people to come to him to explain their conduct. When they did not arrive, he sent for them three times, first through a captain named Martin from Silang, then through [30] Santos Nocon and at. ten o’clock that night he sent for them again through a certain Dorong Puti to get them to explain their conduct. They refused to see the declarant to give a satisfactory explana­tion for their deeds. On the following day, the men under Col. Yntong [Bonzon] fired five shots from Mauser guns at the trenches but there were no return shots by the declarant’s men. After a while, soldiers under the command of Col. Yntong approached the trenches and surrounded them, but the declarant in a loud voice ordered Major Benito Torres to relay it to their men not to fire at the approaching men, because they were shouting that they were our brothers and that their respective officers should first confer: when the declarant allowed them to come nearer, they aimed their guns on the soldiers inside the trenches, disarmed them and then shouted loudly for the shameless Supremo who had robbed them of their money to come out.10 [30a] The declarant came out and embraced the soldiers and told them, “Brothers, I have not committed any shame­ful acts nor have I taken your money from you.” The reply was a gun­shot ordered by a thin man who was said to be a Major, but the bullet missed him near the shoulder and instead hit in the breast a man in a brown shirt behind him. The declarant shouted at them, “Look whom you are killing, brothers, they are your own countrymen!” Instead of heeding his appeal, they simultaneously fired at him and after he fell, an officer stabbed him in the throat. This is all that he can say in the name of God and his native land, which could be confirmed by the inhabitants of the place and perhaps a few officers and soldiers under Colonel Yntong. Besides the acts committed, the soldiers [31] confiscated his clothes and the little money he had saved for expenses; declarant further added that he saw Col. Yntong forcing his wife to go up an uninhabited house with the intention of dishonoring her. Thanks, however, to the intervention of some of his fellow officers, this intention was frustrated. But the same colonel suddenly arrived in Indang later and tried to take his wife by force, notwithstanding the fact that she was nursing him [Bonifacio]. The attempt was again frustrated through the intervention of Tomas Mascardo.

Asked what firearms he and his brothers carried, he answered that he was carrying a revolver with the bullets unused and a dagger; but be­cause of the confusion, he could not ascertain what weapons his brothers had.

Asked if he and his brothers had fired their guns at the government soldiers, he answered that to prove he had not fired his revolver the bul­lets were all there unused; and regarding his brothers’ firearms, they were confiscated by Col. Yntong before the exchange of fire took place.

[31a] Asked if the declarant had any knowledge of the repoTt that two soldiers of the government were killed by shots from the trenches guarded by his soldiers, he answered that he did not have any personal knowledge of it, but that he knew about two men who had died inside the trenches and from there had been brought to the hospital.

Asked if he remembered that he was one of those present at the Casa Hacienda in Tejeros to elect a President, he answered, Yes.

Asked whether in that meeting at Tejeros, Emilio Aguinaldo had been elected President, he replied that because confusion reigned at the time, nothing resulted therefrom and the matters taken up were declared null and void, including the topics taken up by the Magdiwang ministers and the election of Artemio Ricarte as commander-in-chief of the Tagalog prov­inces, all of which resulted in proving that [32] irregularities were com­mitted and that anything taken up did not express the will of the people; thus, he was not in a position to say that General Emilio Aguinaldo had been elected President of the whole archipelago.

Asked whether said Emilio Aguinaldo took his oath of office imme­diately after his election as President, he answered he did not know.

Asked if he knew the present residence of Diego Mojica and Ariston Villanueva, he answered that he had left them both in Indang but did not know where they were now staying.

The hearing was adjourned and after reading and informing him of his statement, the declarant signed it; the Secretary afterwards attested to its correctness.

K/(SGD) GARCIA (SGD) ANDRfiS BONIFACIO

May Pag-asa21

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


GREGORIA DE JESUS

 

[32a] In the municipality of Maragondon on May 4, 1897, Gregoria de Jesus, 19 years old,* a native of Caloocan within the judicial jurisdiction of Manila, married, no occupation, appeared before the Colonel Investigating Officer and his Secretary and made the follow­ing statements in answer to questions asked of her:

Question — Who started the exchange of fire in Limbon, to which she answered that it was the invading armed forces that started the fight.

Question — Who fired first, and she answered that she could not ascer­tain who, because when she saw the people approaching, she ran away to hide among the bushes.

Question — Whether she knew of the detention of five persons whose eye­brows, eyelashes and heads were shaved, to which she replied that they were spies.

Question — Whether frequent meetings were held in their house and who were the people attending them. She answered that there were no meetings held.

[33] Question — Did she know that there was a President for the whole archipelago? She answered, No.

Asked if she knew of any order given by Andres to attack the government forces when they came back and to fire at them if they did not stop after three shouts of “stop,” she answered that she knew nothing about it.

The investigation ended at this point and she signed the docu­ment with the Secretary attesting to its correctness; the declarant further stated that after the bloody encounter, the people looked for her and when they found her, they asked her where the money was

and when she was unable to say anything” about the money, Colonel Yntong ordered her to be tied to a tree and beaten. When his com­panions did not allow this, he forced her to enter a vacant house and asked for her engagement ring,”‘- twelve pesos and revolver bullets. When she had come out, they went to another house. Col. Yntong ordered all the people to come down and then asked her to go up. When she was in Indang she was again about to be tied [33a] but the order was not carried out because of the intervention of his own men. She signed her statement attested by the Secretary.

K/(SGD) GARCIA (SGD) GREGORIA de JESUS

(SGD) LAZARO MAKAPAGAL


RECAPITULATION

 

[34] To the Commander-in-chief of the Army

Below are the documents of the investigation of the case between the government forces and Bonifacio’s soldiers where two government sol­diers and Ciriaco Bonifacio were killed and Andres Bonifacio, head of the rebels, was wounded. The documents say: That Andres Bonifacio [34a] recruited soldiers in the town of Limbon without permission of the gov­ernment and that he ordered the capture of those who refused to join him. After the investigation, he requested the government soldiers to inspect his place in Limbon. The soldiers arrived and on their way back he or­dered his men to fire at the government soldiers and an encounter ensued.

That the first to fire was Ciriaco Bonifacio. The conclusion was that if he fired first, Andres and Procopio would follow him. The defense of the brothers was that they did not know of [35] the existence of a gov­ernment.

But their followers themselves declared that they knew of such a government headed by his Excellency, President Emilio Aguinaldo. An­dres himself admitted that he was present at the meeting in Tejeros. Pe­dro Giron testified that Bonifacio gave him ten pesos to kill Emilio, the President, so that he [Bonifacio] would be proclaimed President. He [Bonifacio] also enticed officials of the government forces to join his forces. [35a] Pio del Pilar, Colonel Ritual and many others who testified in the investigation could attest to this.

According to the findings hereof and because of the seriousness of the case, the decision should be given by a War Council. However, we leave it to your wise discretion to decide on what step should be taken.

Maragondon, May 4, 1897

(SGD) PANTALEON GARCIA


DECISION LEFT TO NORIEL

 

[36] Maragondon, May 4, 1897 Decision:

Respectfully referred to the Brigadier General [Noriel]; since he is the President of the War Council, he is most qualified to decide as to what should be done.

(SGD) E. AGUINALDO


NORIEL CONVOKES THE COUNCIL

 

Maragondon, May 4, 1897

In compliance with the decision of the Commander-in-Chief of the Army, it is hereby ordered to form and convene the Council tomorrow at three o’clock in the afternoon.

(SGD) MARIANO NORIEL


THE COUNCIL

 

[37] In the municipal building of Maragondon, May 5, 1897, there is now gathered the Council who will try and judge the proceedings against Andres Bonifacio and others. Brigadier General Mariano Noriel is the chairman of the Council with six other gentlemen-1 as members. On the right are the defense counsellors Placido Martinez and Teodoro Gonzales, and on the left the prosecutor Jose Elises and others.

At that moment, prisoners Andres and Procopio Bonifacio were fetched and escorted to the Council Hall. When they were seated, the Chairman informed those present that the Council was formed and the secretary read the documents pertaining to the investigation after which, with the per­mission of the chairman, the prosecutor declared as follows:

[37a] That according to said documents, the brothers Andres, Ciriaco and Procopio Bonifacio were the first to plan the attack on the revolu­tionary government, and that in fact he (Andres) induced Pedro Giron to kill the President. He also ordered his soldiers to get ready to fire at the government soldiers who were their enemies. His acts showed that he was a traitor to the government according to the testimony of those who stood witness in this trial.

Ciriaco, brother of Andres, was killed in the encounter with the gov­ernment soldiers. Procopio, also a brother of Andres, was an accomplice.

I respectfully recommend that Andres and Procopio be given capital punishment-0 by shooting them in a public place, each one to be shot five times from a distance of ten feet, in accordance with the gravity of their crime. However, I leave it to the wise discretion of the Council [38] to study my recommendation very well.

The defense counsellor Placido Martinez, with the permission of the chairman, said:

Unworthy as I am, it is my good fate to defend Andres Bonifacio. I will now begin with the accusations that he was getting ready to overthrow the government, as well as for bribery and treason.

To defend Andres Bonifacio is quite impossible because of what he has done. He deserves even a heavier penalty than death because the desire to kill the highest magistrate of the land [38a] is equivalent to killing all of us. This only goes to show that he has no compassion on his countrymen who are his brothers; but it cannot be denied that we are all human and are liable to make mistakes and should therefore receive coun­sel.

All that happened to Bonifacio, when he was fetched from Indang wounded and dying, when he was despoiled of his clothes and his proper­ties were confiscated—all these are enough punishment for the mistakes he has committed. If this is not enough, I beg the Council’s indulgence to listen to what I have to add.

Is it not true that in our Kartilla of the Katipunan, it is ordered that [39] we should love our neighbor as we love ourselves?

Is it not true that Jesus Christ who was tortured and killed by the Jews interceded for them to our God, the Father, to pardon them?

And we mere human beings, why can’t we pardon our neighbors?

In consideration of all this, I ask pardon for Andres Bonifacio’s crime. We will thus be fulfilling that part of the Lord’s prayer which says: “For­give us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.”

Before I close my defense [39a] I request for an investigation of the accusation of Bonifacio that Colonel Agapito Bonzon tried to dishonor his wife. If this is true, the Colonel should be punished; if this is a false accusation then Bonifacio should be punished, for the insult and slander against a superior officer like Bonzon who has been upholding the dignity of his office.

Teodoro Gonzales, counsellor for Procopio Bonifacio, declared that in consideration of the declaration of the accused [Procopio] that he did not induce or bribe anybody and had nothing to do with any plan of Andres Bonifacio regarding the overthrow of the government, and that he did not hide during the encounter, he [Gonzales] begged the Council to save [40] said Procopio from the sentence imposed on him by the Prosecutor.

At this juncture Andres Bonifacio requested to be given permission to talk. He was permitted and he repeated his declarations at the investiga­tion. In compliance with the people’s demand, he was forbidden to talk further. He insisted but to no avail. His counsellors did not ask for anything. The Council agreed to adjourn the meeting so that the decision could be given within twenty-four hours. Everybody signed and I attest to its correctness.

(SGD) MARIANO NORIEL

(SGD) MARIANO RIEGO de DIOS (SGD) CRISOSTOMO RIEL

[40a] (SGD) ESTEVAN YNFANTE (SGD) T. MASCARDO

(SGD) SULPICIO P. ANTONY (SGD) PLACIDO MARTINEZ


CHAIRMAN’S QUESTIONS

 

At the next meeting of the Council, the Chairman asked his com­panions—

First: If Andres Bonifacio knew that there was a government in the whole archipelago whose seat was in this province. They answered that he knew.

Second: If Andres had any permission from the government to have firearms, raise an army and capture the people of Limbon. They answered [41] that he had no such permission.

Third: If Andres had induced officials of the government to join him with their arms. They answered, “True.”

Fifth: If Andres had given money to leading officials of Naik. They answered that it was true.

Sixth: If Andres and his brothers had fought the government soldiers, as a result of which Ciriaco was killed and two government men were killed. They replied in the affirmative.

[41a] Seventh: If the stay of Andres Bonifacio and his brothers in Limbon was for the purpose of recruiting an army to overthrow the government. They (the three) answered “True.”

Eighth: If Andres and Procopio deserved capital punishment for what they did. They answered: the punishment is right.17

Ninth: If his soldiers and other officials also deserved the same punish­ment as accomplices of the plans of Andres, Procopio and Ciriaco Bonifacio. They answered that only the officials deserved to be punished. The soldiers may join the government forces to work at army headquarters and be sent to battle.

[42] Tenth: Should the families of the two government soldiers who died be given financial assistance? They answered yes.

Eleventh: Should financial aid88 be withdrawn from Andres and Proco-pio? They answered yes.

This is the announcement and decision of the Council and I sign attesting to its correctness.

This 6th of May, 1897.

(SGD) SULPICIO P. ANTONY (SGD) MARIANO NORIEL

(SGD) T. MASCARDO

(SGD) CRISOSTOMO RIEL (SGD) ESTEVAN YNFANTE


DECISION SUBMITTED

 

[42a] Then the Chairman of the Council said: After several consultations among the Council members, a decision was reached, and the case was respectfully referred to the Commander-in-Chief for final decision. The President signed and I signed as Secretary.

(SGD) MARIANO NORIEL

[hr]

ENDORSEMENT

[43] To His Excellency, The Commander-in-Chief

[hr]

DOCUMENTS TRANSMITTED

The documents on the investigation and the decision of the Council are respectfully referred to you for final decision.

May God keep you well. Maragondon, May 7, 1897.

The Brigadier General and Chairman of the Council

(SGD) MARIANO NORIEL


BALDOMERO AGUINALDO’S VERDICT

 

[43a] (Ma) Ragondon, May 7, 1897

The documents of investigation and decision of the Council are hereby transferred to the Judge Advocate General Baldomero Aguinaldo.

[44] To the Commander-in-Chief of the Army:29

After examining the documents, the Council stated:

That the brothers Andres and Procopio Bonifacio, residing in Limbon, recruited armed soldiers and hoi omen without the permission of the govern­ment and that they always'” held secret meetings11 with Diego Mojica, Sil-vestre Domingo and Santos Nocon. They had a plan to overthrow the government and kill the President. When this was discovered the government sent soldiers to the place where Andres lived. As soon as he saw the soldiers he gave orders to his brothers to fire if they did not stop and he also ordered the closing of the trenches where they were.

His soldiers did not follow the orders and Ciriaco Bonifacio fired immediately, killing two soldiers of the government forces.

When this happened the leader of the government soldiers ordered his men to fire back, [44a] killing two of their men, until they finally entered the trenches where they found Andres and his brothers still firing. Procopio surrendered when he saw Andres and Ciriaco fall.

Because of these events, there is a reason to believe that the rumors that they had recruited soldiers in order to overthrow the government and kill the President were true,32 and were confirmed by his own men, Pedro Giron, Benito Torres, Bibiano Roque and others whose names cannot be mentioned here because they are too numerous.

Besides this, Andres Bonifacio was also guilty of bribing government soldiers to join his forces. He offered them money that was believed to have come from Diego Mojica and Ariston Villanueva.

I cannot be denied that secret meetings were held in the house of Andres in the barrio of Limbon [45] where they planned the attack against the government soldiers, or that they recruited soldiers and used money to bribe soldiers to join them. It was not true that the money was given as a reward to the soldiers who had fought in Noveleta.

It appears as true that the Bonifacio brothers, Andres, Ciriaco and Procopio, intended to overthrow the government, kill the President and declare war against the government forces; in view of all these findings, the Council has decided to punish them accordingly.

I leave it to your wise discretion to decide the matter as it should be decided.

Other matters: There should be copies of the declaration of Andres Bonifacio, Pedro Giron and others concerned to be able to proceed with the investigation of Diego Mojica and Ariston Villanueva; [45a] and also to investigate the declaration of Andres Bonifacio’s wife regarding the dishonorable intentions of a Colonel to abuse her. The guns, books and other belongings confiscated at the surrender of the soldiers, Andres and Procopio Bonifacio, should be placed under the custody of the government.

Maragondon, May 8, 1897

(SGD) BALDOMERO AGUINALDO


COMMUTATION OF SENTENCE

 

[46] Office of the President and Headquarters of the Army

May 8, 1897

Whereas the Judge Advocate General’s report and request are to con­firm the decision of the Council for capital punishment on Andres and Procopio Bonifacio;

Whereas the decision was reached after proving the treachery of An­dres and Procopio Bonifacio, recruiting soldiers to overthrow the govern­ment and bribing government soldiers to join him;

Whereas Andres and Procopio [Bonifacio] were the ones found guilty while their soldiers only followed their orders obediently, punishment should be meted only to them, and the soldiers, for obeying them, [46a] should be reprimanded severely. Considering the present situation of this land and the fact that the guilty ones are true sons of this country; fol­lowing likewise the merciful policy of the government never to draw blood uselessly; with the approval of its department secretaries,

I hereby pardon Andres Bonifacio and Procopio Bonifacio from the death penalty, and instead grant the punishment of exile in an isolated place, where they will be held in solitary [confinement] watched by pri­son guards and will not be allowed to speak to each other or to other people; to Benito Torres, Nicolas Guzman, Rafael Non, Narciso Tiolo, Ju­lian Aguila, Cayetano Lopez, Bibiano Rojas, Domingo Declaso, Domingo San Juan and Gervacio Santiago, the penalty will be [47] assignment to Army Headquarters as servants for one year.

The arms and other properties confiscated by the government troops are to become government property for use in time of war and for the benefit of the government. Let the request of the Judge Advocate General be granted regarding copies of statements needed for further investigation.

Let the criminals be informed of this decision, as likewise the prose­cutor and the defense counsellors.

As agreed, we all sign

(SGD) BALDOMERO AGUINALDO

(SGD) EMILIO AGUINALDO


DEFENSE NOTIFIED

 

[47a] Municipality of Maragondon May 8, 1897

Notice to the Defense Counsellors

I, the Secretary, do hereby announce the preceding decision to the defense counsellors Messrs. Placido Martinez and Teodoro Gonzales, to which they affixed their signatures.

(SGD) MAKAPAGAL

(SGD) PLACIDO MARTINEZ


BONIFACIOS NOTIFIED

 

Municipality of Maragondon May 8, 1897

Notice to Andres and Procopio Bonifacio

I, the Secretary, do hereby announce the preceding decision to said gentlemen to which they affixed their signatures and I attested.

(SGD) MAKAPAGAL

(SGD) P. BONIFACIO


ANDRES BONIFACIO NOTIFIED

 

[48] Notice:

Municipality of Maragondon May 8, 1897

I, the Secretary, do hereby announce the preceding decision to Andres Bonifacio to which he should affix his signature, but because of an impe­diment preventing the use of his hand, he was not able to sign; which was confirmed by two witnesses and myself as Secretary.

[Signatures lacking]


ENDNOTES:

1 As the town of Bakood or Bacoor was known to Katipunan followers.

2 Ang malabis mo pong bait.

3 Ang mali at tacsil na acala.

4 Maguagui = to win.

5 Obviously a local-made musket or shotgun.

6 May bulutong in the original Tagalog.

7 A village west of Manila, where the water filter plant is presently located, then a stronghold of the Bonifacios.

8 The fate meted on spies by the rebel forces.

9 Pamahalaan.

10 Pamahalaan Nanghihimaksik (Revolutionary Government)

11 Kawal na barilan = a rifleman

12 Ang Oficioi cochero.

13 Itoi hindi marapat = this is not as it should be.

14 At sinusulsulan ang iba.

15 Ayao naman siyang makisama.

16 Walang sala na di mapapakanya ang kapangyarihan.

17 Inakala niya na kagulukan ang sasapitin.

18 Probably his Katipunan pseudonym, meaning “arrow”. The preceding two lines were obviously not finished.

19 ay sumagot na nanalalaman niya at maraming namamahdla na gaya ng General San­tiago, General Emilio….

20 Ang walang hiyang Supremo na magtatakao ñg aming salapi.

21 The Tagalog words for “there is hope.”

* A feminine lapse, for she was born in 1875 and was therefore twenty-two years old at this time.

22 Ang isang singsing na kompromisong tumbaga.

23 Ktt Plo (Kataastaasang Pangulo)

24 anim pang Ginoo.

25 Catiapi

26 Ang quitlan ng buhay.

27 na uucol ang ganitong parusa.

28 ang naturang sustento.

29 Sa Kgg at M na Plñg Digma.

30 palaguing

31 ñg pulong na lihim.

32 may katotohanan yaong balita.