Radaza: Continue to fight for liberation
CEBU, Philippines — In the celebration of the country’s 121 years of independence, local officials call on Filipinos to “ignite the bravery in us, to continue to fight for liberation against forces and other social issues for the future generations to celebrate.”
Lapu-Lapu Mayor Paz Radaza, who along with representatives from the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP), said Filipinos should continue to strive for the betterment of the country.
The event in Lapu-Lapu City is the start of a series of activities that would lead to the Independence Day celebration of the country in 2021.
Those who joined the celebration include employees and officials of the local and national government agencies, teachers, men and women in uniform.
Barangay officials coming from the 30 barangays of the city and several City Hall employees also joined the celebration that kicked off with the raising of the national flag.
Lapu-Lapu City Tourism Officer Hembler Mendoza said that this event reminds Filipinos that Datu Lapulapu is the first hero in the county who fought against a foreign invader.
“This is very significant for the place and for the first Filipino hero Datu Lapulapu and that is the main reason why we are having the celebration here. This is in preparation also for people who want to see the heritage site (Liberty Shrine) restored,” Mendoza said.
Education Secretary Leonor Briones, who represented President Rodrigo Duterte, in her speech, recognizes the heroism of the Filipinos who fought for the independence and freedom that we enjoy today.
The National Celebration of the 121st Philippine Independence Day held in Lapu-Lapu City at Liberty Shrine with a theme “Tapang ng Bayan Malasakit sa Mamamayan” started with the flag raising and offering of flowers.
Briones, NHCP Chairperson Dr.Rene Escalante, Major General Alejandro Baclayon of the AFP and other local officials led the event.
In an interview, Escalante said that this celebration served as a prelude to the three big events happening in Cebu on 2021 – the fifth centenary of the Introduction of Christianity in the Philippines, 500th anniversary of the victory of Mactan and the first circumnavigation of the Earth by Ferdinand Magellan.
Briones said the term bayani comes from the Visayan word “bagani,” a concept of a person, poor, rich or a royal that gives to the community without expecting anything in return.
She added that we have our little heroes like Pantaleon “Leon Kilat” Villegas and Arcadio Maxilom, a former teacher who followed the footsteps of Leon Kilat and Juan Climaco Gobernadorcillo.
An ordinary person can be a hero, she added.
Meanwhile, the Philippine National Police calls on cops nationwide to work harder to free the nation of illegal drugs and the organization’s scalawags.
“Patuloy nating isulong ng buong tapang at dedikasyon ang pakikibaka laban sa krimen at iligal na droga. Isulong natin ang pagbabago sa ating organisasyon at huwag hayaang sirain nga tiwaling pulis and pangalan at imahe ng kapulisan,” PRO-7 Chief Debold Sinas said, reading PNP Chief’s Oscar Albayalde’s message.
Erring policemen have recently marred the Philippine National Police, one of the most recent was in Cebu City in the person of Police Corporal Rogelio Atillo.
Atillo was arrested in a buy-bust operation and he was reportedly into recycling the shabu seized in operations.
Cebu City, however, have made corrective actions by relieving all drug enforcement cops and replacing them with new ones.
Sinas, meanwhile urged his men to reflect and free themselves from problems.
“Free yourselves from problems, harassments, loan, vices, it’s the time to reflect,” he said in a press briefing.
The PRO-7 staff showed nationalism through a short program in full Visayan dialect. About 121 white doves were also released during the program.
Sinas said that celebrating the nation’s independence is to give honor as well to those who fought for freedom. — Zezusita Belarmino , GAN (FREEMAN)