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PIA Press Release
2008/02/14

Evelio's death rekindles Antiqueños' quest for truth, justice and freedom

by PS Mabaquiao

San Jose, Antique (14 February) -- Antiqueños from all walks of life especially those touched by the ideals and dreams of the late Governor Evelio B. Javier paid tribute to his martyrdom during the 22nd death anniversary on Monday.

February 11 of every year was declared a special non-working public holiday in the provinces of Antique, Capiz, Aklan and Iloilo in commemoration of the martyrdom of the late Governor Evelio B. Javier by virtue of Republic Act 7601.

Congressman Exequiel B. Javier, brother of the late hero celebrated it with a program at EBJ Memorial Auditorium, San Jose where hundreds of farmers, fisherfolks, women, government employees, barangay officials, private organizations and friends gathered to pay tribute to his martyrdom.

"Big part of what I am now as a Senior Technologist and Manager of the EBJ Upland Development project, being son of a small farmer is inspired by the principles of Evelio that a son of farmer should not remain riding in a carabao forever but have at least gone to school, get a good education and have done something to make the family graduate from poverty," said Edward Pon-an during the program.

Fr. Fortunato Abiera, Diocesan Mission Director emphasized that dreams of Evelio will remain impossible as his favorite theme song (Impossible Dream) if we will not work for it or make things happen for the Antiqueño children to get a good education, proper nutrition, employment and health services. He also challenged the local officials to curb graft and corruption that apparently drained government resources which are supposed to fund programs and projects for the poor.

Grace Tatoy and Orfe Casimiro women leaders from Bugasong also paid tribute through a Binalaybay presentation while students from Antique Vocational School presented a tableau highlighting the life, works and dreams of Evelio. Among those who shared their though on Evelio where Isidro Padilla, former SB member of Sebaste and Dr. Norman Tanchuan, Provincial Health Officer.

In behalf of Javier family Paolo Everardo Javier said his uncle died not just for the Antiqueños but all Filipinos as well to enjoy freedom. " When he died he was found to have empty wallet and a rosary – a symbol of honesty and faith in God," he said. His heroism not only liberated the Antiqueños from oppression but also fueled the EDSA Revolution which eventually freed the nation from tyranny and dictatorship.

Congressman Exequiel Javier of the Lone District of Antique expressed his gratitude to all who continue to believe in the dreams and ideals of his brother and help make those dreams possible. He further committed to continue his priority assistance on health, infrastructure, livelihood assistance other social services including education as a weapon towards poverty alleviation. (PIA) [top]

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