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28 June 2023, Singapore – In celebration of the 125th Anniversary of the Declaration of Philippine Independence and Nationhood, Ambassador Medardo G. Macaraig led the Flag Raising Ceremony with members of the Filipino Community in Singapore at the Official Residence on 12 June 2023.

During the ceremony, Heads of the Embassy’s partner agencies read the messages of their respective Department Secretaries in celebration of the Kalayaan 2023:  MWO-Singapore Officer-in-Charge and Assistant Labor Attaché Atty. Eduard Ferrer on behalf of Department of Migrant Workers Secretary Susan Ople; Commercial Counsellor Atty. Carla Regina P. Grepo for Department of Trade and Industry Secretary Alfredo E. Pascual; Defense and Armed Forces Attaché Capt. Sherwin E. Respeto, PN on behalf of Department of National Defense Secretary Gilbert C. Teodoro Jr.

Deputy Head of Mission and Consul General Dr. Emmanuel R. Fernandez read the message of Secretary for Foreign Affairs Enrique A. Manalo for this occasion.  In Secretary Manalo’s message, he said that “The Department of Foreign Affairs pays tribute to our rich and proud history by drawing wisdom from its lessons, guiding our steadfast commitment to an independent foreign policy that navigates the complexities of our time.” Secretary Manalo’s message also called on all Filipinos to “look to the future while cherishing the exceptional qualities that our ancestors exemplified and that continue to define the Filipino spirit today – courage, resilience, compassion, and a deep love of country”.

This year’s Philippine Independence Day flag-raising ceremony was the first that was  hosted by Ambassador Macaraig since his arrival in Singapore on 1 February this year. In his remarks, Ambassador Macaraig looked back on the Philippines’ remarkable history that defines our nationhood and the great contribution of all Filipinos, including the Overseas Filipino Workers in Singapore.  

During the event, Third Secretary and Vice Consul Atty. Joy Anne B. Lai, Head of the Cultural and Filcom Relations Section, shared the launch of the inaugural Food Trek 2023 and the microsite for Cultural and Filipino Community events and activities that the public may access to keep updated on the latest news. 

After the Flag Raising Ceremony, the Embassy and the Filipino Community partook of a simple Filipino breakfast salu-salo. The Filipino Ladies Group in Singapore (FLAG) also took the opportunity to  invite the attendees to join the Maria Clara and Ibarra ball, which they are organizing on 12 August 2023, tagged as the first major Filcom-organized event post-pandemic.

The multi-year Philippine Independence Day commemoration (2023-2026), with the theme Kalayaan (Freedom), Kinabukasan (Future), Kasaysayan (History), highlights the birth of the Filipino nation from the proclamation of Philippine independence on 12 June 1898 in Kawit, Cavite until the end of the first Filipino government that lasted until the capture of President Emilio Aguinaldo in Palanan, Isabela on 23 March 1901. The theme aims to raise awareness among the Filipino people of our place in history as the earliest modern democracy and republic in Asia. 

The highlights of the Flag Raising Ceremony is available to watch through the Embassy’s youtube channel. (END).

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