Duterte hails COVID-19 frontliners on Rizal Day
MANILA, Philippines — As the country marks national hero Dr. Jose P. Rizal’s 124th death anniversary, President Rodrigo Duterte hailed the frontliners who emerged as heroes amid challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Today, we see many Rizals fighting for our people, this time against an unseen adversary—a pandemic. We have our brave frontliners who continue to serve the nation in their unique capacities notwithstanding the risks to life and limb. In them, we see a new expression of heroism that is truly inspiring,” Duterte said in his Rizal Day message.
“May we continue to celebrate Jose Rizal and our modern-day heroes, to learn from their example, and to express the love and respect of a grateful nation,” he added.
Duterte also hailed Rizal’s bravery in fighting oppression which ignited nationalism among Filipinos.
“Rizal had great aspirations for his motherland and he used the power of the pen to convey sentiments against oppression and yearnings for emancipation,” he said.
“To the extent that it ignited a stronger sense of nationalism and a revolution, he was successful. He was our hero,” Duterte added.
Rizal was 35 years old when he was executed by firing squad in Bagumbayan, Manila for the crime of rebellion under the Spanish colonial rule.
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