We thank the Government of Canada and Parliamentarians for their warm wishes on our 116th anniversary of Philippine Independence.
Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on Philippine Independence Day:
Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement on Philippine Independence Day:
“Today, I extend warm wishes to the people of the Philippines and to all Filipinos in Canada and around the world celebrating the 116th anniversary of Philippine Independence.
“Our country is home to one of the largest Filipino communities in the world, with well over half a million people identifying themselves as Filipino-Canadians.
“The Filipino community continues to make enormous contributions to our country in many areas of endeavour, helping to build a stronger and more prosperous Canada while further improving our bilateral relationship with the Philippines.
“I remember the warm welcome I received during my first visit to the Philippines in 2012, where I expressed our Government’s commitment to deepening the friendship between our two countries.
“I was particularly pleased with the way the Government of Canada, the Filipino-Canadian community and the Government of the Philippines worked together to address the tragic aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan on Panay Island and other affected areas last year. The Typhoon Haiyan Relief Fund was a success and I am proud of Canadians’ generosity and the role they played – together with our Government and Canadian charities and organizations – in helping the people of the Philippines recover from the devastation caused by Typhoon Haiyan.
“On behalf of the Government of Canada, I wish all those celebrating today a very happy Philippine Independence Day.”
Minister Kenney Issues Statement to Celebrate Philippine Independence Day:
“Today, I extend my best wishes to Filipinos in Canada and around the world as they celebrate Philippine Independence Day.
“It was 116 years ago today that the Filipino people proclaimed independence from more than three centuries of Spanish colonial rule. On this day we celebrate the independent, optimistic and vibrant spirit of the Filipino people, and we commemorate the sacrifices of their national heroes.
“Canada benefits from a hard-working and growing Filipino community. The Philippines is one of the largest source countries for newcomers to Canada, and Tagalog is Canada’s fastest growing language. Canadians of Filipino origin are making tremendous contributions to our country’s success.
“Moreover, Canada continues to strengthen our friendship with the Philippines, as demonstrated by Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s visit to Manila in 2012, and more recently by our contribution to recovery efforts following the tragedy of Hurricane Haiyan.
“As Minister for Multiculturalism, I encourage all Canadians to join with their Filipino neighbours in celebrating Philippine Independence Day and learning more about our country’s vibrant Filipino community.
Statements in the House of Commons from Members of Parliament Marking Philippine Independence Day:
Mark Adler, Member for York Centre (CPC):
Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Today I’m pleased to welcome a delegation of Filipinos from across Ontario to Parliament Hill to celebrate the 116th anniversary of Philippine independence. The visit was marked by the flag of the Philippines being raised on Parliament Hill as songs were sung and children danced. We are so fortunate in Canada to have so many Canadians of Filipino descent. In fact my riding of York Centre has one of the largest Filipino communities in Canada. They are a community of great warmth, strong family values, and hard work, and we welcome them all to our Canadian family. This was demonstrated no better than when Typhoon Yolanda struck the Philippines devastating the country and causing substantial loss of life. Families were uprooted from their homes. Canadians and our Government rallied behind our Canadian Filipino family with financial assistance to the tune of $170 million. It is a testament to the Filipino community that so many Canadians of all ethnic backgrounds donated to help their Filipino friends and neighbours. On behalf of the residents of York Centre, I say (speaking alternate language).
Andrew Saxton, Member for North Vancouver (CPC):
On June 12th Filipino Canadians across the country celebrate a very special occasion: Philippine independence day. And today marks the 116th anniversary of the declaration of Philippine independence from Spanish colonial rule. In my riding of North Vancouver, we host the largest Philippines independence day festival in British Columbia, organized by the Metro Vancouver Philippine arts and cultural exposition society. This is a great opportunity to celebrate the diversity and rich cultural heritage of the Philippines. Booths filled with tantalizing aromas from traditional food and drinks, offer everything from chicken adobo to sweet pastry. Local businesses showcase products and services making it another great opportunity for the whole community to come together. This is a wonderful day to spend with family and friends, an important day to celebrate the strong ties that our two nations share. Having recently visited Manila, I can say more than ever just how similar our values of freedom, peace and democracy are. To all, I say (speaking alternate language).