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The Philippine Revolutionary Government


The Malolos Congress


Malolos CongressEmilio Aguinaldo issued a decree on July 18, 1898 asking for the election of delegates to the revolutionary congress, another decree was promulgated five days later, which declared that Aguinaldo would appoint representatives of congress because holding elections is not practical at that time. He appointed 50 delegates in all (but this number fluctuated from time to time). In accordance with these two decrees, Aguinaldo assembled the Revolutionary Congress at the Brasoain Church in Malolos, Bulacan on September 15, 1898.


The atmosphere was festive and the Pasig Band played the national anthem. After Aguinaldo had read his speech congressional elections were held among the delegates present. The following were among the most important achievements of the Malolos Congress:


1. In September 29, 1898, ratified the declaration of Philippine independence held at Kawit, Cavite on June 12, 1898

2. Passage of a law that allowed the Philippines to borrow P 20 million from banks for government expenses

3. Establishment of the Universidad Literatura de Filipinas and other schools

4. Drafting of the Philippine Constitution

5. Declaring war against the United States on June 12, 1899


Malolos Constitution


A committee headed by Felipe Calderon and aided by Cayetano Arellano, the constitution was drafted, for the first time by representatives of the Filipino people and it is the first republican constitution in Asia. The constitution was inspired by the constitutions of Mexico, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Brazil, Belgium and France. After some minor revisions (mainly due to the objections of Apolinario Mabini), the final draft of the constitution was presented to Aguinaldo. This paved the way to launching the first Philippine Republic. It established a democratic, republication government with three branches - the Executive, Legislative and the Judicial branches. It called for the separation of church and state. The executive powers were to be exercise by the president of the republic with the help of his cabinet. Judicial powers were given to the Supreme Court and other lower courts to be created by law. The Chief justice of the Supreme Court was to be elected by the legislature with the concurrence of the President and his Cabinet.


Apolinario Mabini, revolutionary leaderFirst Philippine Republic

The first Philippine Republic was inaugurated in Malolos, Bulacan on January 21, 1899. After being proclaimed president, Emilio Aguinaldo took his oath of office. The constitution was read article by article and followed by a military parade. Apolinario Mabini was elected as a prime minister. The other cabinet secretaries were: Teodoro Sandico, interior; Baldomero Aguinaldo, war; Gen. Mariano Trias, finance & war; Apolinario Mabini, foreign affairs; Gracio Gonzaga for welfare, Aguedo Velarde, public instruction; Maximo Paterno, public works & communication; and Leon María Guerrero for agriculture, trade & commerce.

The Philippine National Anthem


Aguinaldo commissioned Julian Felipe, a composer from Cavite province was asked to write an an instrumental march for the proclamation of independence ceremony. The original title was "Marcha Filipina Magdalo". This was later changed to "Marcha Nacional Filipina". The lyrics was added in August 1899 based on the poem titled "Filipinas" by Jose Palma. The original lyrics was written in Spanish, then to English (when the Flag Law was abolished during the American period) then later, was translated to Tagalog, which underwent another change of title to “Lupang Hinirang”, the Philippine National Anthem. Continue to Filipino-American Hostilities.


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