Why UP President declared Sept. 21 a ‘Day of Remembrance’

September 18, 2018 - 5:08 PM
Protest rally by the Movement Against Tyrrany and Bayan on September 21, 2017 (Bernard Testa/News 5)

University of the Philippines President Danilo Concepcion declared September 21, also the 46th anniversary of the martial law proclamation, as the Day of Remembrance of the University of the Philippines.

This came shortly after Concepcion reaped criticisms for his presence at the anniversary of the Marcos-backed Kabataang Barangay last August 25, wherein Ilocos Norte Governor Imelda “Imee” Marcos was the guest of honor.

Concepcion and Imee were former officials of the now-defunct political body. Imee was the first KB national chairperson while Concepcion was the KB president in Metro Manila.

The celebration was further criticized after it was held at the Bahay ng Alumni of the University of the Philippines-Diliman where many activists and opposition figures of late strongman Ferdinand Marcos often convened.

Concepcion had issued an apology after the incident, saying that he did not intend to offend anyone and that he’s just a person who commits mistakes.

“I intended no offense, most especially to the UP community that I serve. My desire to be with old-time friends I had not seen for decades, no matter how briefly, made me overlook its effect on the sentiments of the UP community. Tao lang po!” he said.

Concepcion then assured the UP community that the institution will “hold in high esteem” the important figures who sacrificed themselves to fight for the country’s freedom.

The proclamation states that: “There is continuing need for awareness, vigilance, and militancy in the assertion and protection of our fundamental freedoms.”

“I encourage the holding of special lectures, meetings, and ceremonies devoted to the commemoration of UP’s participation and sacrifice in the struggle against martial law,” the UP president added.