Earlier, it was already agreed that the visual artist who would make the interpretation of the famous historic
battle scene would be prominent Cebuano artist Jose “Kimsoy” Yap Jr.
Finally by August, Kimsoy delivered his beautiful and colorful interpretation. He donated this important masterpiece
as his contribution to Philippine philately in general and Cebuano philately in particular.
After ironing out a few details, the artwork was sent to the chairman of the Stamp Advisory Committee, Dr. Ngo
Tiong Tak. A few weeks later, the SAC chairman wrote to this writer revealing some information on our stamp proposal. I quote
him as follows..
‘.. I showed the painting to the members of the Stamp Advisory Committee during our regular monthly meeting…
We are considering using it as one of the four stamps in the final souvenir sheet (#6) in the Centenary of Phil. Independence
series. With regards to Pantaleon Villegas (Leon Kilat) he is already featured on s/s #5… It was scheduled for June
12, and the first day cancel will still bear this date.
The representative from the National Historical Institute did not attend the last meeting, but I believe that
we had taken up the “Tres de Abril” topic before and he is agreeable to issuing a stamps as it has historical
The Tres de Abril uprising was really one for the books. Mr. Dionisio Sy, a noted Cebuano historian even wrote
a recent book on this historical event. The battle took place on April 03, 1898 which incidentally was a Palm Sunday along
Calle Valeriano Weyler. A group of around 80 Cebuano revolutionaries wearing the vistidor, a chalico marked with a prayer
and a headband with a triangular Katipunan emblem engaged the Spanish Guardia Civil in battle. Capitan Mamfor and Sergeant
Royo led the Spanish soldiers.
In this incident, four Spanish soldiers were killed while two Katipuneros also perished. The victorious army
of Pantaleon Villegas locally known as Leon Kilat drove the Guardia Civil to Fort San Pedro. The Cebuanos took virtual control
of the city from April 04 to 06 until Spanish reinforcements came.
The Tres de Abril uprising marked the beginning of a greater struggle that would eventually lead to Philippine independence.
The Cebuano revolutionary movement’s leaders that supported Leon Kilat included Luis Flores, Eugenio Genes,
Alejo Miņosa, Atilano Lopez, Candido Padilla, Francisco Llamas, and Jacinto Pacaņa. (reprinted from Richard Allan B. Uy’s
column stamplines in the Freeman newspaper).