CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- The City of San Fernando started honoring Kapampangan martyr and the late Chief Justice Jose Abad Santos on his birth date on February 19 and not the usual death date on May 7.
Pampanga Third District Representative Oscar Rodriguez told Sun.Star Pampanga that he initiated the move in collaboration with city officials led by Mayor Edwin Santiago, as the bill he filed changing the commemoration remained pending at the Senate due to the campaign period.
He said that he hopes other groups will follow the lead that Jose Abad Santos Day should be celebrated every February 19.
“Sa palagay ko they will follow. The day is not so important and what is important is we recognize the heroism. Pero para lalong mapatingkad at hindi magulo, mas maigi na sigurado tayo sa araw na hindi pwedeng palitan at iyun ay ang araw ng kanyang kapanganakan,” he said, adding that the previous commemorations were marred by the confusing dates like some transcripts point to as May 1, May 2, May 3, May 5 and May 7, which has officially been declared as a local holiday here.
“Kaya iyun [February 19] ang napagdesisyunan ng National Historical Commission and yours truly na ang birth date niya ang araw ng pagdiriwang ng kanyang kabayanihan,” Rodriguez furthered.
He stressed that May 7 will still remain a special holiday until the new law is passed.
“Holiday pa rin iyun hanggat walang bagong batas. But the moment it is approved, February 19 will be the special holiday,” Rodriguez stressed.
The proposed bill, he shared, has long been in the Senate under the committee of Senator Bongbong Marcos.
“Matagal ng na-first reading sa committee ni Bongbong. At napagkasunduan namin ni Senator Franklin Drilon na komo it’s a local bill, pwede ng pagsamahin ang second and third reading para maging batas kaagad at iyun ang ipinangako sa akin. Pero dahil sa failure ng sponsor ng bill sa Senate na dumating, ayan, nabinbin pa. But what is important is naumpisahan na natin dito sa San Fernando,” concluded Rodriguez. (JTD/Sunnex)