Duterte: Illegal drugs among modern day oppressors  

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President Rodrigo Roa Duterte graces 156th birth anniversary of Great Plebeian Andres Bonifacio at the hero’s National Shrine in Caloocan City. (RTVM)


CALOOCAN CITY, Dec. 1 (PIA) – Leading the commemoration of the 156th birth anniversary of Andres Bonifacio in the city, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte on Saturday likened the proliferation of illegal drugs in the country to the Philippines’ historical colonizers who oppressed the masses.

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The President said Bonifacio’s effective leadership, bravery, and patriotism organized and inspired Katipuneros to a noble cause and offer their lives willingly for our liberation and self-determination as a nation. (PIA NCR)

“In this day and age, we look at then at the ‘Supremo’ for the inspiration to face the many adversities that befall us, now we are challenged but overcome by the oppressors of the present day time: illegal drugs, criminality, corruption, terrorism, poverty, environmental degradation and other societal [issues] that continue to hinder our progress,” Duterte said in his keynote speech.

“We are being punished, we are being imposed, at binubugbog tayo ng droga na hindi naman natin kasalanan. Droga, it is an everyday occurrence and it is an everyday fight for the Filipino,” he said.

With the Bonifacio Monument in the background, the President however said, Filipinos should never lose hope as Andres was able to overcome his personal challenges through patriotism, courage, and perseverance.   

“His early hardships did not deter him, Andres Bonifacio, from realizing his dreams and aspirations for our country. Truly his courage, of facing insurmountable odds continues to inspire us in the pursuit of a truly independent Philippines,” Duterte said.

“His effective leadership, bravery, and patriotism, he organized and inspired Katipuneros to a noble cause and offer their lives willingly for our liberation and self-determination as a nation,” he added.

Duterte said Filipinos have the responsibility to remember their fallen heroes and embrace their qualities and positive characteristics.  

“We owe Bonifacio today and other unsung Filipinos, heroes in the awakening of the Filipino nationalism consciousness to fight for our rights to build an entire nation and enjoy the various freedoms that we enjoy today,” he said.

He then thanked the event organizers before asking the nation to unite and continue the fight for a meaningful future.

“I join the Filipino people in commemorating the 156th birth anniversary of one of our great heroes Gat Andres Bonifacio. I also thank the National Historical Commission of the Philippines and its partners for spearheading the annual day of remembrance to honor the life, the works, and the example of Gat Andres Bonifacio, the ‘Supremo’ of the Katipunan and hero of the masses.

During the event, the President also led the wreath-laying rites in honor of Bonifacio and other Katipuneors. He was joined by NHCP Chair Rene

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President Duterte leads wreath-laying rites. (PIA NCR)

Escallante, Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Noel Clement, Caloocan City Mayor Oscar Malapitan, and 1st District Representative Dale Malapitan, and the hero’s descendant Paolo Bonifacio.

This year’s commemorative event theme, “Bonifacio 2019: Pagpupugay at Pag-alala sa Kagitingag Ipinamalas,” remembers the legacy of the Great Plebeian  as the father of the Philippine revolution.

Representatives from labor, women, and youth sectors read excerpts from Bonifacio’s Decalogue or the duties and responsibilities followed by the members of the secret organization known as the Katipunan, which the hero himself penned sometime in 1896.

Andres Bonifacio is considered to have led the first revolution against western colonial rule in Asia that later on ended the more than three centuries of Spanish colonization in the Philippines. He founded, along with other Filipino patriots, the Kataas-taasang, Kagalang-galang na Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan in July 1892. (PIA NCR)

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