Legarda lauds Marcos’ executive order promoting Filipino history and culture

May 15, 2023

Senate President Pro Tempore Loren Legarda lauds and welcomes an executive order that promotes Filipino history and culture by creating an advisory board and a management center to ensure the efficient management of Malacañang Heritage Mansions.

“We welcome the Executive Order issued by no other than our Chief Executive. I believe this is crucial to our continued call for awareness, preservation, and promotion of our cultural heritage,” Legarda stated.

Under Executive Order 26, signed by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. on Friday, the Malacañang Heritage Mansions shall include the Kalayaan Museum and other properties as may be identified by the Advisory Board, which the Social Secretary shall chair.

Mandated to formulate policies, projects, and programs for the efficient management of Malacañang Heritage Mansions, the Advisory Board shall be composed of three (3) representatives from the Office of the President, who shall serve in ex officio capacity, as well as three (3) representatives from the private sector to be appointed by the President.

The EO also establishes the Malacañang Heritage Mansions Management Center (MHMMC), headed by an Executive Director, to provide technical and administrative support to the Advisory Board. This shall ensure that the day-to-day operations and maintenance of the subject properties are managed effectively, efficiently, and economically, as well as oversee its operational activities, including the performance of all employees and personnel of their respective functions.

Under the EO, the Malacañang Heritage Mansions may be opened to the public as a venue for special events, programs, and temporary exhibitions.

As the country joins the observance of National Heritage Month this May, Legarda has underscored the significance of preserving the country’s cultural heritage as a source of identity and resilience.

“Let us all take part in participating in this occasion through simple ways like visiting historical sites, attending cultural events, and learning about our cultural traditions,” she said, adding that preservation of cultural heritage is not solely the responsibility of the government or cultural institution but of every Filipino.

“Whether we are artists, educators, community leaders, or ordinary citizens, we can all contribute to preserving our cultural heritage in our own ways. Cultural heritage is our source of pride and identity as Filipinos,” she said.

Legarda is a known Philippine culture, arts, and traditions advocate. Among the laws she passed are RA 11333, or An Act Strengthening the National Museum of the Philippines; RA 10066, or the National Cultural Heritage Act; RA 11194, or the Gabaldon School Buildings Conservation Act, Republic Act No. 10689, declaring August 9 of every year as National Indigenous Peoples Day, and RA 9242 or the Philippine Tropical Fabrics Law.

In the 19th Congress, she filed SBN 838, which seeks to establish resource centers for indigenous peoples, SBN 241, which aims to provide for the development and protection of the Philippine Handloom Industry; SBN 242 or the Cultural Education Program Act of 2022, which seeks to integrate Philippine arts and culture into the country’s educational system, SBN 244 which aims to ensure and preserve our culinary heritage, SBN 1116, which seeks to establish Local Studies Centers in all state colleges and universities (SUCs), and SBN 624 which aims to establish an Institute of Living Traditions to ensure the viability of the great traditions of arts and crafts in many cultural communities, among other measures.

The Cultural Mapping Bill, amending Republic Act No. 10066 or the National Cultural Heritage Act of 2009, was recently passed on Third Reading in the Senate. This law mandates all local government units to conduct a cultural heritage mapping of their respective areas, covering all tangible and intangible, as well as natural and built heritage. (end)