Senator Pia S. Cayetano has welcomed the signing of the National Museum of the Philippines Act, saying the new law will help bridge generations of young Filipinos to our country’s past to better appreciate our rich history and heritage.
President Rodrigo Roa Duterte recently signed Republic Act No. 11333, which designates the National Museum as the primary institution to manage and develop museums and collections of national importance across the country.
The measure’s principal author in the 17th Congress, Cayetano said preserving heritage strengthens our collective sense of history as a people, which is crucial in charting our nation’s future.
“With the passage of this act, we now have a stronger national policy to protect our heritage. This will help reinforce our sense of nationalism, especially among the youth, and boost sectors like education and tourism, which will provide more opportunities for our people,” she emphasized.
The measure authorizes the National Museum of the Philippines to retain the entirety of its income from all sources of its operations nationwide and overseas. It also exempts it from applicable taxes, duties, fees, and charges from donations.
According to the senator, this provision would enable the agency to better fulfill its mandate to develop the National Museum Complex in Manila, central museums, regional museums, and other facilities it manages. This will also allow the institution to make its services more accessible to the people – and not intended for profit.
“This law will allow the public free admission to public museums and national historical shrines and landmarks,” the senator said, adding that “it is always heartening to see students, barkadas, and families coming in droves to visit our public museums as a fun, learning experience.”
A heritage advocate, Cayetano has championed several measures in Congress seeking to strengthen the government’s efforts to protect the country’s endangered historical landmarks.
She was a member of the National Museum Board of Trustees from 2013 to 2016, and a former chairperson of the Senate Committee on Education, Arts, and Culture during the 16th Congress.
During this time, she led the inquiry into the controversial construction of a high-rise condominium building, which marred the sightline of the historic Rizal Monument at Luneta Park.#