Torre de Manila photobombs APEC leader’s tribute in Luneta

Joshua Justin D. Ramos

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Torre de Manila photobombs APEC leader’s tribute in Luneta
The 'National Photobomber' strikes again as Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto pays his respects at the Jose Rizal Monument in Luneta

MANILA, Philippines – As part of his state visit to the Philippines, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto visited the Rizal Monument at the Luneta Park on Tuesday, November 17.

His Facebook page then released a photo of him laying a wreath in honor of national hero Jose Rizal. In that photo was the infamous Torre de Manila.

Filipino netizens quickly took to the comments section to unleash feelings of disgust and collective shame that they felt the Torre de Manila, dubbed the “National Photobomber”, had caused. (READ: TIMELINE: The Torre de Manila case)

Ceremonia de Depósito de Ofrenda Floral en el Monumento del Héroe Nacional José Rizal.

Posted by Enrique Peña Nieto on Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Many of them felt that the Rizal Monument was marred by the glaring eyesore that is the Torre de Manila, which was allowed to be built because of a controversial zoning exemption in January 2014.

The monument, which is one of the country’s cultural icons, is protected by the National Cultural Heritage Act of 2009, a fact that many opponents of the Torre de Manila say should stop the building’s construction.

To Filipino netizens, it was obvious from the photo that the Torre de Manila “destroys the grandeur and historic sense of the monument,” wrote Facebook user Nonoy-Ron Aquino Gonzales.

Most Facebook users echoed his sentiments. Many were less tactful and more harsh with their criticism, while others called for the building to be taken down. –

Joshua Justin Ramos is a Rappler intern. He graduated from the University of the Philippines, Diliman with a degree in Philippine Studies.

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