Do Not Read This: Diego Cagahastian from Opinyon
Do Not Read This

Tradition matters for PBBM

Jun 6, 2022, 8:36 AM
Diego S. Cagahastian

Diego S. Cagahastian


AT noon on June 30, 2022, the nation will have a new President. Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. or BBM will take his oath as the 17th President of the Republic of the Philippines.

The venue of the inauguration is the National Museum Building in Manila, which used to house the Congress of the Philippines (both the Senate and the House of Representatives) during the time of BBM's father, Ferdinand Marcos.

Chosen to administer the oath to the new President is Chief Justice Alexander G. Gesmundo, who heads the third and co-equal branch of the government, the Judiciary.

The decision favoring the National Museum and Gesmundo as the venue and administering official at the PBBM inauguration means the new President is giving value to tradition.

It has always been traditional that the Chief Justice is invited to swear in the new President. Political and personal reasons pressed President Noynoy Aquino to pick Associate Justice Conchita Carpio-Morales to do the honors for him, because he disliked Chief Justice Corona, probably on the very personal issue of the family asset, Hacienda Luisita.

The venue, the old Congress building which now houses the National Museum, is close to the heart and memories of the new President.

His father used to deliver the State of the Nation Address before the joint session of Congress in this building, and for several years at that. No doubt the young Bongbong remembers these events, during which the elder Marcos charmed the nation with his eloquence, wit and oratory.

This building is also the venue for the presidential inaugurations of Presidents Manuel Quezon, Jose P. Laurel and Elpidio Quirino. Again, it is out of respect for the long and esteemed history of the National Museum Building that the BBM inaugural committee chose the place.

I always pass P. Burgos St. in Manila and I noticed that every day, there is a long line of visitors at the National Museum, many of them young people and students. This is a good sign because we are inculcating the values of nationalism, love of country and national pride in being Filipinos through our youth's exposure to culture and history.

There is now an ongoing discourse about the nation's recent history, particularly the Martial Law years, and it is about time that Filipinos learn both sides of this issue, for only they -- not the Americans or Europeans -- are in a position to pass judgment on what really happened.

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