Bill declaring ‘PH-US War Memorial Day’ hurdles 2nd reading

MANILA � The House of Representatives has approved on second reading a measure declaring Feb. 4 of every year as a special working holiday in commemoration of the Philippine-American War Memorial Day.

Through voice voting, the Lower Chamber passed House Bill 7260, which seeks to declare Feb. 4 as the "Philippine-American War Memorial Day to commemorate the patriotism, bravery and self-sacrifice of Filipino heroes during the Philippine-American war.

The Department of Education (DepEd) and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) shall be mandated to ensure that appropriate activities are held in schools at all levels to commemorate the "Philippine-American War Memorial Day".

The National Historical Commission of the Philippines shall provide DepEd, CHED, and the general public with the necessary information to ensure a meaningful commemoration of the event.

ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio Tinio, principal author of the bill, said the Philippine-American war showcased "Filipino solidarity and the resolute refusal to submit to imperial aggression".

He noted that more than a million Filipinos lost their lives as a result of the war that broke out on Feb. 4, 1899.

The struggle waged by Filipinos to defend the freedom newly-won from Spain and uphold the First Republic of the Philippines against the occupation forces of the US has been described as one of the most heroic struggles ever waged in modern times; a struggle waged against implacable odds and at terrible cost, Tinio said.

The partylist lawmaker said the proposed declaration obligates every Filipino citizen to pay back the debt of gratitude for the sacrifices and bravery of the country's ancestors in "resisting and fighting the invading forces" and "giving up their lives defending the ideals of a truly independent nation."

Source: Philippine News Agency