2 senators reiterate promotion of Filipino language, dialects

Two lawmakers on Friday reiterated their commitment to promoting the use of the Filipino and indigenous languages. Senator Loren Legarda, chair of the Senate Committee on Culture and the Arts, emphasized the importance of Republic Act No. 11961 or 'An Act Strengthening the Conservation and Protection of Philippine Cultural Heritage Through Cultural Mapping and Enhanced Cultural Heritage Education Program, amending for the Purpose Republic Act No. 10066, Otherwise Known as the 'National Cultural Heritage Act of 2009", during the Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino's (KWF) Gabi ng Parangal (Night of Recognition) at Hotel Lucky Chinatown. In a video message played during the event, Legarda commended the KWF for its continuous efforts in strengthening, expanding, and promoting various languages and dialects in the Philippines, particularly indigenous languages. She said the law which was recently signed by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. signified a milestone in safeguarding cultural diversity amid the challenges of globalization. 'The reservation, preservation and protection of our arts, culture and language have been among my most valued and consistently upheld advocacies. In my fourth term as senator, we have proposed the cultural mapping bill, a legislative measure that seeks to amend the National Cultural Heritage Act,' Legarda said. 'Under this law, all local governments across the Philippines will conduct cultural mapping of their respective localities, including their languages," she added. Meanwhile, Senator Lito Lapid expressed concern over the potential loss and neglect of Filipino languages due to modernization and globalization. Lapid cited the impact of social media on language evolution and challenged language advocates to maintain proper language use on these platforms. 'In today's time, our young people don't just learn languages in schools, on the radio, television or in films. We can't ignore the significant role of social media in the advancement of languages. Many trending words spread regularly across various Internet platforms like YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, causing a continuous evolution of our language,' Lapid said in his message delivered by his chief legislative officer, lawyer Abelardo Manlanque. Lapid added these posed a challenge to language advocates to be present in these platforms and encouraged everyone, including the KWF, to defend the Filipino languages. "I encourage each of us, led by the Commission on the Filipino Languages, to be defenders and advocates of our languages. This is not just valuing our culture and integrity, but also fulfilling our duty to keep our language alive and meaningful amid constant change)," he said. The senator also urged those in power to use the Filipino language to spread proper education, technology and economic progress. Meanwhile, the KWF awarded the prestigious Dangal ng Wikang Filipino 2023 honor to the Philippine Federation of the Deaf, Inc. and individuals Felipe M. de Leon, Rolando B. Tolentino, Pilar 'Pilita" G. Corrales, filmmaker Elwood Perez and Carol B. Dagani. The Seal of Excellence in Language and Culture or the Selyo ng Kahusayan sa Wika at Kultura 2023 award was given to Catanduanes State University, Sorsogon State University, Aurora State University, Quirino State University and the University of San Carlos. West Mindanao State University received the Dangal ng Wika at Kultura 2023 award. The KWF also recognized essayists of the year (Sanaysay ng Taon 2023): Mark Anthony S. Angeles (1st Place); Ariel U. Bosque (2nd place); and Joanah Pauline L. Macatangay (3rd place).

Source: Philippines News Agency