Press Release
February 19, 2018

Bill seeking to declare April 27 as Lapu-Lapu working holiday okayed

The Senate approved today on third and final reading a bill seeking to declare April 27 as a special working holiday to commemorate the victory of Lapu-Lapu, a chieftain of Mactan, and his men over the Spaniards in 1521.

Senator Richard Gordon, a former tourism secretary, introduced Senate Bill No. 108, also known as an Act declaring April 27 or every year as a special working public holiday throughout the country to commemorate the victory of Lapu-Lapu and his men over the Spaniards on April 27, 1521.

Gordon said Lapu-Lapu deserved to be recognized as he was the first chieftain who defied and resisted foreign invasion.

"When the Spaniards first set foot on the Philippines, they had a goal to convert the local people to Spanish traditions and customs to Christianity," Gordon said in his bill.

The bill said Lapu-Lapu, whom Gordon described as a Visayan Muslim chieftain of Mactan, refused to bow down to Spanish sovereignty and be converted to Christianity unlike Rajah Humabon of Cebu and other neighboring chieftains.

Lapu-Lapu gathered his men and successfully defeated the Spaniard led by the famous navigator Ferdinand Magellan on April 27, 1561, the bill said.

According to Gordon, Lapu-Lapu embodied the line in the Philippine National Anthem, "sa namlulupig, 'di ka pasisiil," as he was the first successful defender of the Philippine shores.

"Lapu-Lapu had strong principles and was a peaceful leader, until invaded, possessing the qualities of courage, bravery, strength, honor and integrity, which should be emulated by every Filipino," Gordon said.

"In keeping with the Filipino tradition of commemorating momentous events in national history," the bill proposes the declaration of April 27 as a special wrking public holiday to be known as Lapu-Lapu Day or Adlaw ni Lapu-Lapu, as a fitting tribute to be courage displayed by Lapu-Lapu and his men in the Battle of Mactan," Gordon added. (PM)

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