President Rodrigo Duterte feted national heroes Marcelo H. Del Pilar and Gen. Gregorio del Pilar during the commemoration of the Philippine Independence Day at Bulacan Capitol Grounds in Malolos on Saturday.
"The two patriots made the ultimate sacrifice in the defense of our young republic," Duterte said in his speech.
"I therefore consider it a great honor to bestow upon them through their kin, who are with us today, the Order of Lapu-Lapu in recognition of their extraordinary acts and heroism. Marami pong salamat sa inyong dalawa."
Marita Villatema-Santos, grandniece of Gen. del Pilar, received the award.The Order of Lapu-Lapu recognizes “invaluable or extraordinary service in relation to a campaign of advocacy of the President, according to Executive Order No. 17 signed by Duterte in April 2017.
Gen. del Pilar was a prominent military figure in the Philippine revolution against Spain and the Philippine-American War, despite his youth.
Meanwhile, his uncle, Marcelo, played a vital role in the Propaganda Movement in the late 19th century, one of its objectives being to obtain equal rights between Spaniards and Filipinos.