Bulakenyos commemorate 120th anniversary of Malolos Congress

Strong wind and driving rain brought by super Typhoon “Ompong” did not deter Bulakenyos from commemorating the 120th anniversary of the opening of the Malolos Congress at the historic Church of Barasoain on Saturday morning.

The wreath-laying ceremony at the monument of President Emilio Aguinaldo in front of the Barasoain church was led by National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) Executive Director Ludovico Badoy, Governor Wilhelmino Sy-Alvarado and City of Malolos Mayor Christian D. Natividad in the midst of heavy rain.

According to Ruel Paguiligan, Republican Museum of the Republic of the Philippines in 1899 based in the Barasoain church, the simple ceremony was held despite severe weather because September 15 was the exact date of the opening of the Malolos Congress.

Governor Alvarado also added “the pleasure of our feast is to be deferred but it is not possible to delay the remembrance of the day when it occurred. Because in the Congress of Malolos there was a principle of fulfilling our own government ownership as a Republic.”

City Mayor Christian D. Natividad, for his part, said what happened at the Barasoain Church 120 years ago usher in a drastic change in the lives of the Filipinos and has put them in the world map as a free people of a sovereign and independent nation.

“So even the strength brought by Typhoon Ompong, we need to remember the exact day of any historical events,” Natividad added.

Meanwhile, despite the remembrance of the Malolos congressional anniversary on September 15, there will be another memorial program on September 20 with Senate President Vicente Sotto III as guest speaker.

According to the Filipiniana.net, on 8 October 1898, Felipe Calderon presented to the members of the Malolos Congress the draft of the Constitution of the First Philippine Republic which he based on the Constitution s of Mexico, Belgium, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Brazil, and France. The Malolos Congress inserted few amendments in the proposed Constitution before it was transmitted to President Aguinaldo for his approval. On 21 January 1899, President Aguinaldo approved the Malolos Constitution, the first Republican Constitution in Asia. The Constitution, composed of a preamble, 14 titles, transitory provisions, and an additional article, creates the Philippine Republic whose government shall be popular, responsible and representative with three separate branches—the executive, the legislature, and the judiciary.

The Malolos Constitution was ratified by the Malolos Revolutionary Congress inside the historic Barasoain Church.

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