Filipinos to celebrate Independence Day

(MENAFN- The Peninsula) Philippine Ambassador Wilfredo C Santos (fourth left) cutting a cake along with UFOQ Chairman Edgar Anami (third left) Miss Tourism International Philippines 2015 Janela Joy Cuaton (centre) and other officials at the launch of the programme.

By Raynald C Rivera

DOHA: Filipinos in Qatar are all set for a grand celebration of the 118th anniversary of the declaration of Philippine Independence with a month-long activities culminating in a whole day event expected to attract around 10000 people.

Speaking at the launch event on Tuesday Philippine Ambassador Wilfredo C Santos said this year’s celebration is a departure from its previous editions with associated events spread across the country throughout the month in a bid “to broaden the celebration and allow Filipinos to celebrate the occasion wherever they are in Qatar.”

“The celebration will start in Dukhan and culminate in Doha. This is just the start of this kind of format that I intend to institutionalize in Qatar and we are following similar format that have succeeded in other parts of the world particularly in the US” said Santos.

Calling the celebration “the most anticipated most colourful and biggest event of the whole Filipino community in Doha each year” Edgar Anami Chairman of United Filipino Organisations in Qatar (UFOQ) said the events will be “a showcase the unique talents of Filipinos and the richness of Philippine culture and traditions.”

Anami said UFOQ has been working closely with the embassy to ensure the celebration will be shared by as many Filipinos in Qatar as possible adding the main event is expected to witness between 7000 to 8000 attendees.

UFOQ is the umbrella organization of around 170 Filipino organisations in Qatar some of which are leading the various events.

The activities in the run-up to the main event start tomorrow with the Pre-Independence Day celebration in Dukhan and the fourth Ambassador’s Cup Basketball Tournament at Al Gharrafa Sports Club.

Other events include the Zumba Morning on May 20 Culinary Food Festival Now & Before Doll Exhibit for Philippine History and Fashion Philippine Independence Week Filipino Families in Qatar Photo Exhibition Filipino Talent on May 27 and The Philippine Cultural Show on May 28. The main celebration on June 3 will start with the traditional flag raising ceremony at the Philippine Embassy at 5:30am followed by a community breakfast.

A motorcade will start from the embassy and end at the Sheraton Doha where the day-long activities will take place comprising the parade of colours 118 rose display songs street and ethnic dances photography competition band showdown car show trade fair and a food exhibition.

Workshops by the Ministry of Interior a medical mission and POLO-OWWA and SSS-Pag-ibig services will be held at the venue.

Meanwhile Ambassador Santos lauded the Filipino community for winning the “Best Community Award” recently saying it is “a recognition of our work and contribution and a measure of what we have done as a community.”

“I urge all of you to remain united in our goal. Let us work closer and partner together to provide a good image of our country and people in this part of the world” added Santos.

In the Philippines Independence Day is officially observed on June 12 while in Qatar it is celebrated on a Friday closest to this date to ensure the participation of most Filipinos. This year it will be celebrated on June 3 before the start of Ramadan season.

The Peninsula

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