Antique Heroes Hall rising soon | Inquirer News

Antique Heroes Hall rising soon

/ 11:05 AM April 09, 2022

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ILOILO CITY—The province of Antique is building a Heroes Hall that will serve as a repository for memorabilia of heroes and historical figures of the province, including slain opposition leader and former governor Evelio Javier.

Juan Carlos Perlas, designated provincial tourism officer, on Wednesday said that the third floor of the provincial tourism building will be developed as a dedicated space for memorabilia and as a media center.


He said the renovation of the area started last year and would continue after the May 9 elections.


Perlas issued the statement and letter in response to Antiqueños who had initiated an online petition campaign asking the provincial government to put up a museum in memory of Javier.

Heavily armed men shot Javier on February 11, 1986 while he was monitoring the results of the February 7, 1986 snap presidential elections that pitted then president Ferdinand Marcos Sr. and opposition candidate Corazon “Cory” Aquino.

He was wounded near the old provincial capitol and eventually shot dead in a bathroom of a nearby rice store where he had sought refuge.

His death drew outrage and helped ignite protest actions leading to the ouster of Marcos in the Edsa People Power uprising from February 22 to 25, 1986.

Javier is considered a hero in Antique and the anti-dictatorship struggle and his death anniversary is a special non-working holiday in Panay Island.

But his supporters have lamented that his memorabilia including clothes he wore when he was killed have been neglected and are pushing the provincial government to put up a permanent repository.


Perlas denied that Javier’s memorabilia have been neglected, saying that these were stored at the provincial tourism office “inside a special air-conditioned, climate-controlled room.”

He said the memorabilia cannot be placed at the museum that will be set up at the renovated old provincial capitol because the building is under the jurisdiction of the National Museum.

Perlas said the Balay Na Bato Ancestral House also cannot house Javier’s memorabilia because it is under the supervision of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NCHP).

“Although the NHCP caters to exhibits of historical relics, they tend to veer away from exhibitions which rouse political color and matters which are political in nature to this day,” he said in his letter.

The state of Javier’s memorabilia became a focus after a scheduled February 24 rally of former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., son and namesake of the late dictator, was abruptly postponed amid an outcry from Antiqueños over the holding of the rally at the Evelio B. Javier Freedom Park where the former governor was shot.

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Antique Gov. Rhodora Cadiao and Antique Rep. Loren Legarda have openly declared support for Marcos and his running mate Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio.

Legarda is one of the senatorial candidates of the tandem.

TAGS: antique, Regions

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