MANILA, Philippines - It's about time women get their own museum, so say two women legislators from the Gabriela Women's party-list group, to commemorate the heroism, martyrdom, and achievements of Filipinas in society.
Reps. Luzviminda Ilagan and Emerenciana De Jesus filed House Bill 1477 or the National Filipino Women’s Museum Act of 2010, citing the need to honor women's heritage and heroism in developing appreciation and respect for women and girls, and in eliminating discrimination, oppression and violence against females.
“Women’s historic contributions to Philippine civilization, nation and people should not go unvalued and unnoted, leaving a gap in our country’s historical record,” explained Ilagan.
She also added that many Filipinas played key roles in the struggle for liberation, justice, peace, and prosperity.
Among such women, according to Jesus, are Gabriela Silang, Melchora Aquino (a.k.a. Tandang Sora), Teresa Magbanua and Trinidad Tecson who fought against colonialism and foreign invasion.
De Jesus also mentioned women who organized women's groups at the turn of the century, putting up the Logia de Adopcion, a masonic lodge in 1893; Association de Damas dela Cruz Roja (Women’s Red Cross Association), and the Association of Ilonga Feminists led by Pura Villanueva Kalaw, which started the campaign for women's suffrage in 1912. Because of their work, the Philippine legislature passed the suffrage bill in 1933, and women's suffrage rights were ratified in a plebiscite held in 1937.
Under the proposed bill, the museum will honor the achievements of women in history as well as modern-day women.
It proposes that the National Commission of Culture and the Arts manage the National Filipino Women's Museum.