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Following the death of President Corazon "Cory" Aquino on August 1, 2009, two resolutions, House Joint Resolution Nos.
As of 2007 The reformist writer José Rizal, today generally considered the greatest Filipino hero and often given as the Philippine national hero, has never been explicitly proclaimed as the (or even a) national hero by the Philippine government.
While other historical figures are commemorated in public municipal or provincial holidays, Rizal and Bonifacio are commemorated in public nationwide (national) holidays and thus are implied to be national heroes.
Already admired in his lifetime for his nationalistic writings and activities, Jose Rizal was executed for treason on December 30, 1896 by the Spanish colonial government.
His writings had helped inspire the Philippine Revolution against colonial rule.
By or even before 1960, Rizal was already held in such esteem that he was referred to as the Philippine national hero, even though no legislation had been passed making it official.
That year, historian Teodoro Agoncillo wrote in his History of the Filipino People that the Philippine national hero, unlike those of other countries, was not "the leader of its liberation forces".Agoncillo noted the sentiments of certain quarters calling for Rizal's replacement as the national hero by Andres Bonifacio, since Rizal was interpreted as ultimately a reformist content to be under Spain, not a revolutionary wishing for independence.A distant relative of Emilio Aguinaldo who took over the reins of revolutionary power from Bonifacio and ordered the "execution" of the former, Agoncillo opined that Bonifacio should not replace Rizal as the national hero but be honored alongside him.Their report was submitted to the Department of Education, Culture and Sports on November 22 of that year. It was speculated that any action might cause a number of requests for proclamation or trigger debates that revolve around the controversies about the concerned historical figures.On July 24, 2007, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo approved Republic Act No.Loosely, the term may refer to all Filipino historical figures recognized as heroes, but the term more strictly refers to those officially designated as such.In 1995 the Philippine National Heroes Committee officially recommended several people for the designation, but this was not acted upon.9256, which declared the Monday nearest August 21 a nationwide special holiday in honor of Senator Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino, Jr., called Ninoy Aquino Day. On the same date President Macapagal-Arroyo also approved Republic Act No.9492, which decreed that National Heroes Day be celebrated on the last Monday of August, Bonifacio Day on the Monday nearest November 30, and Rizal Day on the Monday nearest December 30.Spanish conquistadors reached the islands of the Philippines in 1521.They named the country after King Philip II of Spain in 1543, pressing to colonize the archipelago despite such setbacks as the 1521 death of Ferdinand Magellan, killed in battle by Lapu-Lapu's troops on Mactan Island.