Duterte agrees with Marcos’ idea of renaming ‘Philippines’ to ‘Maharlika’

Duterte agrees with Marcos’ idea of renaming ‘Philippines’ to ‘Maharlika’

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte in Malabon City last January 29, 2019. TOTO LOZANO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday said the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos was right in wanting to change the Philippines’ name to Maharlika.

Speaking during the distribution of land titles to Agrarian reform beneficiaries in Maguindanao, Duterte said the country was left with no other choice as it was discovered by Spain, then headed by King Philip II, in 1521.


“Wala na tayong magawa. Philippines. Philippines because it was discovered by (Ferdinand) Magellan using the money of King Philip. Kaya pagdating ng ulol ginawang Philippines. Pero okay na ‘yan, balang araw palitan natin,” Duterte said.

“Actually, tama si (Ferdinand) Marcos. Panahon ni Marcos, tama talaga si Marcos. Gusto niya palitan (ng) Maharlika… the Republic of Maharlika. Gusto niya palitan it means… more of concept of serenity and peace,” he added.


Duterte was referring to the 1978 Parliamentary Bill, which sought to change the name “Philippines” to “Maharlika,” meaning “nobly created.”

It was filed by then Senator Eddie Ilarde and was widely criticized because it was allegedly associated with Marcos, who liked the name.

Duterte was in Buluan, Maguindanao, where more than a thousand agrarian reform beneficiaries received their certificates of land ownership awards (Cloas) for the first time. /kga

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