No historical records have clearly stated on how Malay derived its present name.  However, beliefs continually inherited reveal that such was coined from the word "MAEAY", a school of exotic fishes that abound in the river adjacent to the first settlement area.  In the height of the Spanish era, families such as the Cajilig, Casidsid, Maglinte, Masangcay, Oczon, Omogtong and Taunan were concentrated in "PAHO", the site of the present Catholic Cemetery.  With its natural barriers, it was an excellent choice purposely to evade Moro pirates who have frequented the place.  Pacification of these marauding activities initiated their transfer to the present town site.

Until its eventual creation as a Municipality, Malay was geographically and politically a part of the Municipality of Buruanga, about ten (10) kilometers on its west border.  The people's participation in the selection of local head (Capitan Absolute) was duly respected.  Selected on alternative basis, the official seat varied likewise with the residence of the chosen leader.

The practice was observed from 1812 until 1858.  After then, the local seat was permanently transferred to Buruanga, succeeding leaders were relegated to the title of Teniente Absolute.

Separation was a brainchild fo then Municipal Secretary Geronimo SM. Aguirre in 1859.  But his cause watered down for lacking prominent sponsors.  But the ardent desire to acquire political sovereignty, social and economic advancements persisted despite of succeeding colonial transition.  In 1947, pioneering efforts of the late Arcadio Tandez and Alfredo Santa Maria elicited support from the late Congressmen Jose M. Reyes and Cornelio T. Villareal of the respective second and third Districts of Capiz through H.B. 1749.  Its monumental significance came into reality on June 15, 1949 through R.A. No. 381 signed by the late President Elpidio Quirino, creating the Municipality of Malay.  Official inauguration was held on January 2, 1950.

 

RA 381 

 

Republic Act 381

AN ACT CREATING THE MUNICIPALITY OF MALAY IN THE PROVINCE OF CAPIZ

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of representatives of the Philippines in Congress assembled:  Section 1.  The barrio of Malay with all the surrounding barrios is hereby separated from the municipality of Buruanga, Province of Capiz, and created into a new and separate municipality to known as the municipality of "MALAY".  Section 2.  The said new Municipality of Malay shall include the following barrios: Dumlog, Cabulihan, Balusbos, Naba-oy, Cubay Norte, Cubay Sur, Cogon, Argao, San Viray, Caticlan, Manoc-manoc, Balabag, and Na-asog.  Section 3.  The elective officials of the new municipality shall be appointed by the President of the Philippines to hold office until their successors are elected and qualified.  Section 4.  This act shall take effect upon its approval.  Approved, June 15, 1949.