A legislator proposed an additional star at the Philippine Flag and a new declaration of independence day.
Senator-elect Francis Tolentino who was the guest speaker at the 121st commemoration of Philippine Indepence Day yesterday at the Rizal park said the fourth star, an addition to the current three, is the representation of Benham Rise.
“Philippines owns Benham Rise that is as big as the island of Luzon, hence, modesty aside, I propose a fourth star to reflect the Benham Rise, the future land of the next generation of Filipinos,” Tolentino said in his speech.
Benham Rise or the Philippine Rise, a 13-million hectare underwater plateau located in the northeastern seaboard of the country.
According to Tolentino, with the size of Benham Rise, it is not just a part of Luzon but must be recognized as another major island. And this should be represented by adding a fourth star to the flag.
“At the back of the sun, we can add the star there,” he said describing where the additional star in the flag will be placed.
Tolentino also mentioned the “need (for) a new declaration of Independence Day” citing that the Philippine Independence day should not be granted by foreign countries.
“Our freedom (must) emanate not from the recognition of other countries but it is God-given. Our freedom is from God and is a right of every fellow Filipinos,” he said.
“We need a new declaration of independence as a symbol of national renewal and our commitment for a better future,” he added.
Tolentino also cited suggestions of declarations that must be included in his proposed new declaration of Independence Day.
“Part of our Independence is the continuous right to guard against drugs, corruption, crime, poverty, and calamities. We must also continue to unite to protect Mother Nature. Also, we must always love our fellow men,” he said.
Tolentino also mentioned that the Philippines’ rights in the long-disputed West Philippine Sea.
“Philippines owns the bigger part of the West Philippine Sea including those that are written in the treaty of Paris,” he said.