One day, a Spaniard, while walking and surveying a thick forest, passed by a native who was cutting a big tree. The Spaniard asked the native about the name of the tree and the reply was “narra”. The Spaniard mistook the reply as “no ira” which meant “unselfish”. The Spaniard then rearranged the letters from these words till it finally came out as “Orani”, which thenceforth became the official name of the town.
The town and te church of Orani became an independent missionary center in 1714. the Dominican friars built the church and became their quarters in Bataan since then. The place grew into a little prosperous town until it was nearly brought down the ground during the earthquake of September 16, 1852. Important studies shows that the church and the municipal government building were also destroyed. They were rebuilt till 1891 when Orani again resumed its slow march for growth. This growth was checked again by the great fire of March 16, 1938, which almost burned three-fourths of the whole town, including schools, the church and the town hall. Reconstruction began, but before they could finish, World War II broke out and once again the town suffered tremendous destruction. After the war, the people of Orani are once again building their town.
The municipality of Orani is located 115 kilometers northwest of Manila and is bounded on the north by Hermosa, on the south by Samal, on the west by Dinalupihan and on the east by Manila Bay.
It has a total land area of 5,926.00 hectares covering 29 barangays. About 1,231 hectares are used for agriculture, 1,943.86 hectares are forestland, 971.93 hectares are forest reservation and 1,295.91 hectares are reserved for the National Park. The rest are classified as wetland.
Palay, coffee, vegetables, peanut, citrus trees and fruit trees are the major produce. Cutflowers like aster, chrysanthemum and gerbera are locally cultivated while bamboo and jungle vines can be gathered from Orani’s rich forestlands. Aquamarine resources like milkfish, tilapia, prawn, crabs, mussels and oysters are caught in Orani’s rich fishing grounds and fishponds.
It has a total population of 48,568 (1995 National Census), where 62% of the working age group (16-60) are employed.
Utilities and Amenities
Digitel and Bataan Telephone Exchange (Battlex) provide telephone services to residents of Orani. A telegraph and telex office is managed by the Bureau of Telecommunications. Aside from the Philippine Postal Corporation which provides postal services, the town also has a private courier and Internet service provider. A cable television station, Clear Vision Cable TV Company, also operates in the area.
Ninety-nine percent (99%) of the households and commercial establishments are serviced by the PENELCO for their power needs.
There is adequate potable water supply provided by the Orani Water District. There are areas with free flows, shallow and deep wells.
Most industries existing in Orani are agriculture-based such as rice and coffee production, food processing, cutflower production, and aquaculture of milkfish, tilapia, crab and prawns. Prawn processing has become a major dollar earner for the municipality. Garments manufacturing and metal and iron works also proliferate in the area.
The proposed declaration of a 500-hectare lot in Barangay Doña as an economic zone is a promising development especially for investors engaged in light to medium enterprises. Food processing poses as a viable industry considering the availability and abundance of raw materials in the area.