“As we wage united battle against COVID-19, we now have the opportunity to demonstrate that we possess the same gallantry of spirit and the nobility of character as the heroes of our past. Let us now move forward with courage, hope, and optimism as we overcome this pandemic,” President Rodrigo Duterte expressed this sentiments to his citizens in his Independence Day taped address.
Duterte did not attend the traditional Independence Day rites at Manila’s Rizal Park to prevent crowds from forming as the country continues to attempt curtailing the spread of COVID-19. He remains in his hometown of Davao City until now.
In his speech, he honored the forefathers who were the reason for a free Filipino nation, and urged his fellow countrymen to remember their heroism.
“I join all Filipinos in celebrating the 122nd anniversary of the Proclamation of Philippine independence. 122 years ago our forefathers proudly proclaimed the birth of the Filipino nation. Today, we honor them for their bravery, heroism, and sacrifice, as well as we thank them for the gifts of democracy and freedom.”
Several protests — both online and street rallies — are scheduled to be held today by progressive groups and individuals.
Philippine National Police chief Archie Gamboa warned to the public to refrain from staging huge gatherings, citing possible health risks amid the pandemic.