Philippine Embassy in Tokyo Commemorates Dr. Jose Rizal’s 151st Birth Anniversary
Ambassador Manuel M. Lopez and Madame Maria Teresa L. Lopez led Philippine Embassy in Tokyo officials in commemorating the 151st birth anniversary of Dr. Jose Rizal at Hibiya Park in central Tokyo on 19 June 2012.
Ambassador Lopez noted that ceremony was a fitting way to cap the year-long commemoration of Dr. Rizal’s 150th birth anniversary.
Professor Ambeth Ocampo, a visiting professor at Sophia University, joined Embassy officials in offering flowers by the historical marker and bust of the Philippine national hero. Prof. Ocampo expressed the hope that Filipinos continue to be guided by the life and teachings of Dr. Jose Rizal.
Professor Takefumi Terada, Dean of the Faculty of Foreign Studies of Sophia University and a noted Philippines studies expert in Japan, also attended the ceremony.
The original stone marker was erected in 1961 for the 100th birth anniversary by three organizations in Tokyo devoted to Rizal, namely, the Knights of Rizal, Rizal Society of Japan, and Friends of Rizal. The stone marker reads in English and Japanese “In 1888, the national hero of the Philippines, Dr. Jose Rizal, stayed at Hotel Tokyo which was located in this place.” The national flowers of the Philippines and Japan, the sampaguita and the sakura (cherry- blossom) are also engraved.
The unveiling of the bust of Dr. Rizal and the refurbishing of the original stone marker were done in 1998 during the Centennial celebrations under former Philippine Ambassador to Japan Alfonso Yuchengco. That ceremony was also attended by former Japanese ambassadors who served in the Philippines.