121st BATTLE OF ALAPAN. Philippine Navy officers fix the giant Philippine Flag prior to its hoisting in commemoration of the National Flag Day and the 121st Anniversary of the historic “Battle of Alapan” in Imus City on May, 28, 2019. (Photo by Dennis Abrina) 

IMUS CITY, Cavite – Mayor Emmanuel Maliksi of this city, tagged as the “Flag Capital of the Philippines”, led national and local officials in the “National Flag Day” celebration on Tuesday at the Dambana ng Pambansang Watawat, the national flag shrine at the Heritage Park here.

"Hangad ko po ang makabuluhang pagdiriwang natin ng Pambansang Araw ng ating Watawat. Magsilbi sana itong masiglang panimula sa ating taunang paggunita ng anibersaryo ng Proklamasyon ng Kasarinlan ng Pilipinas (I have always aspired for the meaningful celebration of the National Flag Day. I hope this serves as a vibrant start for our yearly celebration of the anniversary of the Proclamation of Philippine Independence)," said Maliksi at the historic site in Miguel Santo, Alapan 2-B.

The hallowed ground here was the site of the five-hour historic battle on May 28, 1898, between the Philippine revolutionary forces and the Spaniards, which marked the beginning of several triumphant uprisings against the colonial government.

The victorious battle marked the first unfurling of the Philippine flag led by Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo, giving birth to the first Philippine Republic - with Aguinaldo being the acknowledged first President.

The event became the basis for the annual observance of the country’s National Flag Day celebration pursuant to Proclamation No. 374 series of 1965, declaring the date each year as the “National Flag Day”.

The Imus Heritage Park was also declared by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) as a national historical landmark through Resolution Number 5 Series of 1993 signed on May 26, 1993, and from then on the huge Philippine Flag is hoisted 24/7 on a 120-meter flagpole.

The city government also marks the commemorative event through its annual “Wagayway Festival” in a symbolic waving of the Philippine Flag during a huge parade that culminates at the flag shrine.

Joining Maliksi at the wreath-laying and flag raising ceremonies at 8 a.m. on Tuesday were NHCP Chairman Dr. Rene Escalante, Ruel T. Maranan, president of Ayala Foundation, Inc., NHCP Acting Executive Director Ludovico D. Badoy, Aguinaldo descendant and former Prime Minister Cesar Virata and Monique Pronove, president of Pronove Tai.

The hoisting of the huge Philippine Flag here was held simultaneously by government offices and local government units (LGUs) across the country nationwide.

Pursuant to Republic Act No. 8491, the Filipino people are enjoined to display the Philippine flag from May 28 to June 12 in homes, schools, lamp posts, and other public and private establishments, spaces, vehicles, and watercraft. (PNA)