Rodrigo Duterte

On National Heroes Day, Duterte asks Filipinos to emulate frontliners

Sofia Tomacruz

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In a written message, President Duterte honors the country’s heroes and tells Filipinos to draw strength from them during the health crisis

On the celebration of National Heroes Day on Monday, August 31, President Rodrigo Duterte called on Filipinos to show the same kind of heroism seen in the nation’s frontliners during the coronavirus pandemic. 

“The current global health crisis we are facing today demands of us a new expression of heroism – the kind that has been shown to us by our selfless Filipino frontliners in various settings,” Duterte said in a written message. 

Unlike in previous years, there are no big commemorations for the national holiday this year the coronavirus pandemic prohibits large gatherings in public places.

Duterte said he was hopeful the spirit of the country’s’ heroes will “inspire us to uphold our democratic institutions and rally against all threats to our freedom and sovereignty.” 

He honored the country’s heroes and told Filipinos to draw strength from them during the health challenge. 

“In honor of our heroes, let us strengthen our resolve in overcoming the challenges ahead guided by the virtues and standards set by the stalwarts of our nation,” Duterte said. 

Duterte has faced criticism over his administration’s slow response to the health crisis which cost the country lead time that could have cushioned the blow of the health crisis. 

Nearly 6 months into the pandemic, Filipinos continue to battle rising infections with more than 3,500 deaths and over 217,000 people confirmed to have the disease as of Sunday, August 30. –

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Sofia Tomacruz

Sofia Tomacruz covers defense and foreign affairs. Follow her on Twitter via @sofiatomacruz.