A flag is a visible representation of the feelings, aspiration and values of people through the use of conventional or traditional symbols.
Viewed in the context of this definition, a flag thus, becomes the symbol of people and fulfillment of their legitimate dreams and aspirations. As applied to the Philippine setting, it stands for faith in the future and confidence in our capability to undertake the task of nation-building geared towards the creation of a New Society, freed from the inequities and maladies of the old.
In a way, it also presents a challenge to the vigilance of all citizens in the desire and obligation towards affirmation of one’s dignity as a person. To be able to give the flag the courtesy and affection it deserves, an accurate understanding of the symbolism hidden behind its traditional or commonplace representations becomes a necessity.
In spite of the simplicity of its design, the Southern Leyte provincial flag is no exception. This primer hopes o throw more light into its symbolism.
- The green background identifies Southern Leyte as an agricultural province where majority of the people derive their livelihood from the products of the soil.
- The golden trimmings suggest golden harvest, not so much as assurance, as it is an expression of a common prayer and a hope in the face of the unpredictable elements of nature and vagaries of chance.
- The cross is an allusion to its historical past in connection with the first Christian Mass on the Philippine soil which was celebrated at Limasawa island.
- The coconut and abaca leaves represent the two major agricultural products of the province from which majority of the people derive their livelihood.
- The four flowers represent the four major areas into which the province is divided namely:- Maasin, Macrohon, and Padre Burgos Area, Sogod Bay Area, Pacific Area, and the Panaon Area.
- The orchid flower representing the four areas, belong to the “Intermedia” variety of the “phelanopis” family of orchids common in the country. This particular variety, however, was originally found in Southern Leyte. This explains why it is the Provincial Flower. And true to its role as the provincial flower, during the summer months, riotous profusion of its attractive blooms is one of the distinctive features of Southern Leyte. The famous “Star of Leyte” which won a major prize in orchid show in Manila in 1967 was actually taken from Southern Leyte. This has already produced several attractive variants or mutants which are high-priced collectors’ items. Among them may be mentioned the mutant distinctively curly petals and dark violet labellum locally called “Kulot”. This rarity has elicited appreciated raves from orchid enthusiasts. The “Star of Leyte”, as it was billed in the orchid show, is a mutant of “Kulot”.A Primer on the Official Symbols of the Province