Quezon City: Rename Roosevelt Avenue after FPJ instead
Janvic Mateo (The Philippine Star) - October 25, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Following opposition from residents and parishioners of Del Monte Avenue, the Quezon City government has expressed support for an alternative proposal to rename Roosevelt Avenue instead after the late movie actor Fernando Poe Jr.

“It is but right and proper to honor the late Fernando Poe Jr. for his invaluable contribution to the city and our culture,” Mayor Joy Belmonte said yesterday.

“At the same time, we also recognize the historical and religious significance of the area. We are hoping this issue will be resolved judiciously,” she added, referring to the opposition of residents and parishioners to the original proposal to rename Del Monte Avenue.

The mayor expressed support for the decision of the city council to pass a resolution urging the Senate and House of Representatives to rename Roosevelt Avenue in honor of the late movie star.

On Friday, the city council’s committee on cultural affairs and tourism held a public consultation regarding concerns over the original proposal to rename Del Monte Avenue.

The committee, led by Councilor Candy Medina, and the stakeholders arrived at the decision to support the alternative proposal, which was first raised by Senate President Vicente Sotto III.

“The Senate president’s suggestion to rename Roosevelt Avenue after the late action king more popularly known as FPJ is a welcome development and a win-win solution for everyone concerned,” Belmonte said.

“We thank the Senate president for sharing his wisdom and for providing us with a situation that is acceptable to everybody,” she added.

Over 1,000 people have signed an online petition against the original version of the bill filed by Sen. Lito Lapid, which would rename Del Monte Avenue to FPJ Avenue.

The petition cited the historical significance of the name of the avenue, which was derived from San Francisco del Monte, a retreat founded in 1590 by Franciscan missionary Fray Pedro Bautista, who was later canonized as a saint.

Sotto said Roosevelt Avenue is ideal as it is larger compared to Del Monte Avenue.

He said Lapid agreed to the proposed amendment, which will be taken up when the bill is sponsored on the plenary.

It was unclear if Roosevelt Avenue is named after Franklin or Theodore Roosevelt, both former presidents of the United States.

Some reports indicate that it was the former, who signed the Tydings–McDuffie Act that established the process for the Philippine independence.

FPJ died on Dec. 14, 2004, months after losing the highly contentious presidential polls against then re-electionist Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

In 2006, Arroyo named him National Artist, but his family declined to receive the award until 2012, when it was re-confirmed by Arroyo’s successor, then president Benigno Aquino III.

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