MANILA - What should be the Philippines' national food?
Bohol Rep. Rene Relampagos (1st District, Bohol) has filed a measure seeking official recognition of adobo as the national food.
He also wants the following declarations of national symbols:
bakya as national slippers
bahay kubo as national house
jeepney as the national vehicle
arnis as national martial arts and sport
cariñosa as national dance
Philippine monkey-eating eagle as national bird
kalabaw as national animal
bangus as national fish
narra as national tree
Philippine pearl as national gem
sampaguita as national flower
anahaw as national leaf
mango as national fruit
Relampagos said he filed the bill to "lay the basis for the declaration and recognition of the Philippine national symbols.
“National symbols represent its country, its people, its history and its culture. In the Philippines, there are around twenty national symbols being taught in school. However, of these symbols, only ten are official, that is with basis either in the Constitution, Republic Acts and Proclamations,” Relampagos said.
The move, he claimed, would leave other "national symbols unofficial or blatantly colorums, for having no basis for their declaration."
“Rizal now becomes the unofficial national hero, carabao the unofficial national animal, mango the unofficial national fruit, bangus the unofficial fish, the baro’t saya as the unofficial national costume and so on,” Relampagos said.
He said the bill "aims to develop and instill nationalism and unity, ensure respect, promotion and preservation of the national symbols, correct the unofficial status of these symbols as taught in schools, provide guidelines for their use, care and conservation and to promote Philippine tourism through these symbols, among others."
He added the bill is in support of the "policy of the State to inculcate patriotism, nationalism and appreciation of the role of national heroes and symbols in the historical development of the country."
If passed into law, it would direct the Department of Education (DepEd), Commission on Higher Education (CHED), the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) and the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) "to give primordial importance to the respect, promotion, preservation, conservation, cultivation and usage of these national symbols, as appropriate, including dissemination through the quad-media."