CITY OF MALOLOS, Bulacan — Bulacan commemorated the 119th anniversary of the Malolos Republic this morning at the historic Barasoain Church in the provincial capital of the province with the theme of “Unang Republikang Filipino, Patnubay sa Pagsulong ng Bansa.”
The First Philippine Republic, popularly known as the Malolos Republic, was the first republic in Asia. It was inaugurated on January 23, 1899, at the Barasoain Church where Aguinaldo took his oath of office as president of the country.
In 2013, then-President Benigno Aquino III signed Proclamation No. 533, s. 2013, declaring January 23 of every year as “Araw ng Republikang Filipino, 1899.”
Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Assistant Secretary for Human Resource and Special Concern Marjorie Jalosjos represented DILG Undersecretary Eduardo Año as the guest speaker said during the occasion that 119 years after gaining our independence from foreign domination there are now appear new enemies in our midst.
She identified these as “kriminalidad, ang masamang epekto ng ipinagbabawal na droga, ang mapanlinlang na ideolohiya ng komunismo, ang nakakapinsalang banta ng terorismo at ang mala-kanser na sakit ng korapsyon.”
These are the primary reasons that reason for the country’s destruction of the environment, the morality of our society and the future of our next generations.
Jalosjos added that now, more than ever do we need the bravery, sacrifices, and unity of each and everyone just like what our forefathers did “nararapat na isabuhay natin ang tatak ng lahing palaban at may pagmamahal sa bayan.”
On the other hand, Bulacan Gov. Wilhelmino Sy Alvarado said that looking back to the period, when every Filipinos were fighting for the freedom of the country, is one way of awakening the patriotism and inspiring unity in every Filipino.
“Kahit hindi natin malampasan o kahit na hindi natin mapantayan, kahit kaunti lang ng ipinadamang pagmamahal ng mga bayani natin sa bansa ang maibigay natin ngayon, sapat na para gumalaw ang bansa na alam n’yang may nagmamalasakit at nagmamahal sa kanya. Sa ganitong paraan, mararamdaman din ng mga mamamayan ang pagmamahal sa kapwa dahil tayo mismo ang bumubuo sa bansa,” Alvarado said.
Meanwhile, Malolos City Mayor Christian D. Natividad said that January 23 had already forgotten by many Filipinos especially the new generations.
“January 23 came and went but many Filipinos seem to have forgotten the importance of that day in Philippine history,” Natividad added.
Natividad himself, who has become known for his passion in educating people about the importance of Malolos Republic Day, said he wishes the country would celebrate Republic Day with as much pomp and splendor as other countries do.
He added that the events that transpired at Barasoain Church on January 23, 1899, is equal to the proclamation of Philippine Independence in Kawit, Cavite on June 12, 1898 because the inauguration of the First Philippine Republic gave credence and legality to the historic moments at the balcony of the mansion of then-revolutionary leader Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo, making him the president of the 1st Philippine Republic, to the eyes of the international community.
The city mayor also mentioned that in other countries, Republic Day is an opportunity to showcase a nation’s military strength and cultural diversity. Millions join the celebration of Republic Day as men in uniform hold a parade and various cultural groups stage performances.
Congressman Jonathan Sy-Alvarado of Bulacan’s 1st District emphasized the House Bill 477 or to declare January 23 of every year as a national holiday or to make January 23 of every year a special Philippine holiday just like June 12 or Philippine Independence Day.
He also said that most of the senators supported his 169 authored bills including the House Bill 477, Magna Carta for the poor and the making City of Malolos as a lone congressional district.
Prior to this, Jaloslos and Alvarado together with Vice Gov. Daniel R. Fernando, National Historical Commission of the Philippines Executive Director Luvicido Badoy, Mayor Natividad, and other local officials led the flag raising ceremony and wreath laying activity before Gen. Aguinaldo’s monument in Barasoian Church.
Also present during the event were local officials, employees, senior citizens, students, teachers, non-government organizations, and other sectors in Bulacan.
Also, to give Bulakenyos the full opportunity to celebrate and participate in the occasion, Executive Secretary Salvador C. Medialdea issued Proclamation No. 394 also known as “Declaring Tuesday, 23 January 2018, as a Special (Non-Working) Day in the Province of Bulacan”. (RONDA Balita Online News)