I’m not sure if Rizal stayed in Muntinlupa, chances are good that he did not, did he ever visited this sleepy hilly town? that also has no historical reference so clearly during his days the young hero did not have anything to do with the once Augustinian domain which at that time partly belongs to San Pedro, Laguna.
Muntinlupeños should be proud that the city government paid homage to our hero, dedicating a monument in the city hall that was made its centerpiece. The old city hall caught fire last year and was completely destroyed. Rumor has it that it was intentional – now, I don’t want to speculate which party did the people of Muntinlupa harm – that’s how bad local politics is here. The new Mayor found himself without office. He has to build one.
The new city hall was inaugurated this year. Styled with the traditional Filipino house architecture in mind with touches of modern western structures. The Rizal monument was its accent, its the first object you’ll see before you enter the lofty hall. Rizal has many monument we all know that and I’m sure he won’t mind sharing space with his contemporaries but this great guy with the undercoat on in the tropics is the man!
The monument is an old one, I found out that they spray painted it recently to make it look like pure bronze. I did try to ask the cultural dept who created the monument, I’m still waiting for the answer – but let me say this, this piece could be one of the best monuments. It’s not as grand as the one in Luneta or Fort Santiago as matter fact the statue seems to be a real life version of Rizal, the height and the physique could match the man of many monuments and shrines, on top of this is its location. For the first time in all the years of my residence in Muntinlupa I see people noticing the monument, some even snapping shots at it.
Mayor San Pedro deserves to be commended. I feel that this guy is a Rizalist, I wrote him an email last March about my willingness to volunteer myself to heritage work for the city and also sought his help in some of the issues we are currently facing here but the Mayor has been busy. His been improving the busy city – I also like his active participation in my local parish.
I also sent sample pics to KOR – I believe they collect photos of Rizal monuments. Hope they could add this on their site.