BAGUIO CITY – The local government has lined up simple but meaningful activities to commemorate the 76th Araw sa kagitingan which will be held at the Veteran’s Park along Harrison road here on Monday, April 9, 2018.
The theme of this year’s activities is “Kagitingan at Pagmamahal sa Pilipinas Para Sa Tunay na Pagbagago.”
The first part of the program will be the wreath laying ceremony which will be participated in by city officials, post-war veterans, sons and daughters and other guests which will be held at around 8 am.
He local government will also be recognizing the veterans and their families who will be attending the occasion.
Philippine Military Academy (PMA) Superintendent Lt. Gen. Donato San Juan II will serve as the guest of honor and speaker during the program that was prepared for the commemoration rites that will be held at the Veteran’s Park.
Rep. Mark Go, Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan and Vice Mayor Edison R. Bilog will also give their respective messages during the simple commemoration rites that was prepared for one of the significant historical events that transpired in the country 76 years ago.
Domogan reiterated his previous position that it is unfortunate that the country is celebrating and commemorating the Fall of Bataan or where the Philippines lost in the war but Filipinos do not actually celebrate the victories that were made, particularly the surrender of tyranic Japanese Imperial Army leader Gen. Tomoyoki Yamashita to the allied forces which actually happened on September 3, 1945 right inside the Ambassador’s Residence in Camp John Hay where Gen. Yamashita signed his surrender documents.
Further, he emphasized that Baguio City should be part of the country’s history books because it is where World War II started on December 8,1941 and ended on September 3, 1945.
It can be recalled that in the morning of December 8, 1941, a fleet of Japanese warplanes flew over the city and dropped bombs that destroyed the main gate of Camp John Hay which signalled the start of world War II in the Asia-Pacific Region.
After Gen. Yamashita was captured in Kaingan, Ifugao on September 2, 1945, he was brought to Baguio City by the allied forces and it was inside the Ambassador’s Residence where he signed his surrender documents that signalled the end of the hostilities between the Japanese and the Filipino-American forces.
Rep. Go refilled the bill previously authored by Domogan seeking to declare every September 3 as National Victory Day not only in the city but also in the whole country in celebration of the formal surrender of the Japanese forces to the allied forces.
To date, the formal celebration of every September 3 as Victory Day is done only in the city because of the absence of the required legislation for the formal declaration of the said date as National Victory Day natiowide.
Local officials urged the public to actively participate in the commemoration of Araw sa Kagitingan to pay tribute to the living veterans and their families for the sacrifices that they have made during the war.
By Dexter A. See