June 19, 2018, 11:44 pm
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Bonifacio’s Laguna

BONIFACIO Day yesterday, November 30, celebrating the 154th birth anniversary of one of the Philippines’ greatest and most influential heroes, Andrés Bonifacio. 

Laguna being my retirement home, I’m pleasantly surprised to read how involved and active were the Katipunan members of Laguna.

Laguna writes about the Supremo: Born on November 30, 1863, Bonifacio was one of the Filipino revolutionary leaders who spearheaded the Philippine Revolution against the Spanish colonizers in the late 19th century. A Freemason, Bonifacio, along with some others, founded the underground movement known as the Kataastaasang, Kagalanggalangang Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan, or simply Katipunan in 1892 that heralded the end of Spanish colonial rule over our people. 

The Katipunan was a secret revolutionary society that instigated militant reactions against the Spaniards, aiming to help Filipinos in their quest for freedom and independence against Spain. Hence, Bonifacio is regarded as the Father of the Philippine Revolution and was the most effective President of the Supreme Council of the Katipunan.

Bonifacio’s leadership was undermined by others, particularly by the supporters of Emilio Aguinaldo who aggressively took over the revolutionary forces after a series of leadership challenges and internal rifts that threatened the unity of Katipunan. Bonifacio was arrested and was unjustly ordered to be tried and executed under the guise of treason along with his brother. On May 10, 1897, the Bonifacio brothers (Andres and Procopio) were executed in the mountains of Maragondon, Cavite.

In Laguna, the flame of resistance was firmly planted by members of the Katipunan: In Bae, Laguna, Katipuneros took care of Apolinario Mabini, who later was acknowledged as the Brains of the Revolution. In Pagsanjan, Laguna, Katipunan members launched the earliest battle against the Spaniards in the Battle of Sambat. In Magdalena, Laguna, Emilio Jacinto, the Brains of the Katipunan, participated in the Battle of Maimpis. It was also believed that Gregoria de Jesus, wife of Bonifacio and Lakambini of the Katipunan, hid in a town in Laguna after escaping from the men who persecuted the Bonifacio Brothers.

Magdalo was the Katipunan chapter in Cavite led by Emilio Aguinaldo, while the other Cavite chapter of the Katipunan called Magdiwang was led by Mariano Alvarez who was an uncle of Bonifacio’s wife Gregorio de Jesus. It was a takeover of power over the revolution by Emilio Aguinaldo from Bonifacio’s Katipunan.

Unlike Rizal Day or any other national celebration for independence, Bonifacio Day is celebrated on the day of his birth rather than the day of his death, mainly because Bonifacio suffered the controversy of being killed by his fellow countrymen, not by the Spaniards.

Andres Bonifacio was one of those influential people we are proud to have in our country. He made great contributions and sacrifices during the Spanish regime to gain our country’s independence which we are enjoying now.

As a tribute to Bonifacio, a bill was submitted to Congress by Kabataan Party List Representative Raymond Palatino, filed as House Bill No. 4543. It aims to promote another subject in college that will cover the life and contributions of Bonifacio, and will be known as “The Life, Works, and Ideals of Andres Bonifacio.”

The bill emphasizes that college students should learn to apply the nationalistic ideals that Bonifacio possessed during his time. It also stresses the role of the government in promoting nationalism and patriotism under the Philippine Constitution. 


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