ARTICLE | JUNE 12, 2011 – 9:05AM
Manila, Philippines (June 12 2011) – The Philippines celebrates today its 113th Independence Day, the first under President Benigno C. Aquino III.
The president’s independence day speech is expected to be a preview of his upcoming upcoming State of the Nation Address (SONA) in July, Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said yesterday.
Today’s celebration kicks off with simultaneous flag raising in various historic sites.
President Aquino raises the Philippine flag at the Rizal Park. Other personalities shall do the same in other places including the Barasoain Church in Malolos, Bulacan with Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. leading the event; the monument of Andres Bonifacio in Caloocan City with Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo; the Pinaglaban Memorial Shrine in San Juan City with Sen. Teofisto Guingona III; Mausoleo de los Veteranos de la Revolucion in Manila North Cemetery with Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin; the Pamintuan Mansion in Angeles City, Pampanga with Sen. Francis Pangilinan, Davao City with Secretary Lualhati Antonino, and Cebu City with Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia.
Aquino will lead the Independence Day celebration at the Rizal Park where several activities are lined up to highlight the importance and significance of the event.
Valte urged the public to take part in the Independence Day activities.
“In your free time perhaps, you can go watch the Independence Day parade and all other activities. We also have a job fair,” Valte said.
The job fair and annual parade take place at the Rizal Park.
Valte also said that US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sent a congratulatory message through the US embassy in Manila reiterating US support to the Philippine government’s commitment to fight corruption, promote judicial reform, reduce poverty, and create opportunities for its people.
“The United States and the Philippines are long-standing friends and partners. We stood together during World War II to defend liberal democratic values. Today, we are working together on many new fronts,” Clinton said.
“Whether we are working to find ways to catalyze economic growth, helping victims of natural disasters, combating extremism, or calling for greater protection of human rights, our two countries share a vision of a better world,” she said.
US Ambassador Harry Thomas Jr. said the Philippines and the US will maintain strong relationship “now and in the future” as Washington remains dedicated to being the Philippines’ partner whenever the country is in harm’s way.
Thomas said this is a “commitment born of our shared histories and close ties, and we are proud to stand by your side.”