Nov. 13, special public holiday

PANGASINAN DAY

NOVEMBER 13, Monday, will be a special public holiday in Pangasinan and in Dagupan City to celebrate the 121st birthday anniversary of the late Speaker Eugenio Perez, who served as representative of the old Second District of Pangasinan.

By virtue of Republic Act No. 6721, Nov. 13 is declared Pangasinan Day in honor of Perez (also known as “Manong Eniong”), who was House Speaker from 1946 to 1953.

Born on Nov. 13, 1896, in Sitio, Obong in the once barrio of Basista in the town of San Carlos, Perez first became a councilor of San Carlos before he ran for Congress and won.

Basista is now a town in Pangasinan, carved out from San Carlos City.

He is remembered in Dagupan as author of the law that converted the former town of Dagupan into a city. This law was signed by then President Manuel Roxas on June 20,1947.

As one of the co-founders of the Liberal Party, Perez was Speaker of the House of Representatives while the Philippines was rising from the ravages of World War II.

As Speaker, he supported all the economic programs of President Elpidio Quirino, among them the legislation that gave birth to the National Power Corporations (NPC), National Irrigation Administration (NIA) and the Development Bank of the Philippines.

Married to Consuelo Salazar, a music soprano with whom he had three children, Perez died on August 4,1957.

His remains are buried in the public cemetery of San Carlos City. (Leonardo Micua)