Philippine Holidays: September 21—National Day of Protest
While everybody may expect September 21 in addition to 2017 national holidays, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte declares September 21, 2017, a national day of protest rather than one of the Philippine holidays. He advises government offices to suspend work and classes on that day. President Duterte also encourages union and labor groups to participate and express their work grievances on that day in the context of the right to exercise peaceful assembly.
The president clearly said that he will NOT declare September 21 a holiday. Instead, he called it a national day of protest.
UPDATE: Proclamation 319 signed by the president on September 19, 2017, officially declares September 21 a national day of protest. President Duterte calls on demonstrators to maintain their actions “within the bounds of the law”. In his proclamation he states:
I urge all protesters to act within the bounds of the law, maintain a peaceful conduct of rallies, marches and demonstrations, to be vigilant of possible infiltrators who may instigate violence in an effort to provoke the police and other law enforcement authorities, and avoid causing any undue inconvenience to their fellow citizens.
On the same day September 19, 2017, the Office of the President releases Memorandum Circular 26 on view of the Proclamation 319 declaring Septemeber 21, 2017, a national day of protest. The Memorandum directs offices and agencies that deliver basic health services and preparedness not limited to DOH, DSWD, NDRRMC, and DSWD to provide stand-by emergency assistance near demonstration areas.
Meanwhile, the Memorandum also advises respective heads of private companies and private schools in affected areas to exercise “sound discretion” when it comes to a work suspension. •MBO: MainBarOnline