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The Magdiwang and Magdalo Factions

 
        In December 1896, Bonicaio was invited by the Katipuneros of 
    Cavite to come to the town of Imus. Thanks to a string of victories 
    led by Emilio Aguinaldo, the rebels now controlled most of the 
    province. Bonifacio, as the highest officer, or Supremo, of the 
    Katipunan, was asked to settle a dispute. 

        In December 1896, Bonicaio was invited by the Katipuneros of 
    Cavite to come to the town of Imus. Thanks to a string of victories 
    led by Emilio Aguinaldo, the rebels now controlled most of the 
    province. Bonifacio, as the highest officer, or Supremo, of the 
    Katipunan, was asked to settle a dispute. 

       There were two rival Katipunan councils in Cavite. One council 
    was the Magdalo, of which Aguinaldo was a member. The other 

 

   Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo

     was the Magdiwang council, headed by Mariano Alvarez, a relative of Bonifacio’s wife.

         Bonifacio’s decision to come to Cavite proved to be the beginning of his downfall.
    There was a time when the two men – Aguinaldo and Bonifacao – respected and valued
    each other. The Supremo himself had admitted Aguinaldo into the Katipunan in his house
    in Binondo. Aguinaldo recalled this historic moment in his biography when he wrote,
    "That was the beginning of my acquaintance and friendship with Andres Bonifacio." And
    when news of Bonifacio’s defeat in the battle of Pinaglabanan reached the Katipuneros
    in Cavite, Aguinaldo, worried for the Supremo’s safety, sent his men to look for Bonifacio
    in the forests of Kalookan and Malabon.

        But the friendship between the two men soured. Bonifacio and his army had suffered a
    number of defeats at the hands of the enemy. In contrast, Aguinaldo and his rebels had
    managed to boot the Spaniards out of most of Cavite. The feeling of regionalism between
    the Tondo native and the young man from Kawit, Cavite was very strong. Also, the two
    leaders differed in their political ideas.

        Aguinaldo and the Magdalo group believed it was time to form a new kind of
    government.  Aguinaldo had already suggested that the Katipunan government be changed
    to a revolutionary form of government modeled after the American system.  Although he
    was only a Magdalo flag lieutenant at the time, his bold ideas challenged the power of the
    Supremo.

        Bonifacio and the Magdiwang men believed that the Katipunan government was still
    useful. It could still answer the Filipino’s need for change. It had its own constitution and
    bylaws. In other words, at this point in our history there were two leaders with two different
    views on how to run the government.

        The rivalry between the two groups weakened the rebels’ hold on Cavite. Aguinald’s
    Magdalo soldiers did not want to help defend the towns held by Magdiwang soldiers when
    they were attacked by the Spaniards. Bonifacio’s Magdiwang soldiers did not help the
    Magdalo rebels when the enemy attacked their towns. The result was that almost all the
    towns once held by the Katipuneros easily fell one by one to the Spaniards.