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The Philippine Revolution
The Malolos Republic

Philippine Republic

Owing to the objections of Mabini to some provisions of the constitution, Aguinaldo did not immediately promulgate it. The Congress leaders compromised with Mabini by agreeing to insert amendments to satisfy the President's closest adviser. On January 21, 1899, Aguinaldo finally promulgated the Malolos Constitution. Earlier, on January 2, he formed the cabinet as follows:

Apolinario Mabini President of the Cabinet and Secretary of Foreign Affairs
Teodoro Sandico Secretary of the Interior
Baldomero AguinaldoSecretary of War
Mariano Trias Secretary of Finance
Gracio Gonzaga Secretary of Welfare, including Public Instruction, Public Works, Communications, Agriculture, Industry and Commerce

The Council of Government, or the Cabinet, according to Mabini, "belongs to no party, nor does it desire to form one; it stands for nothing save the interest of the fatherland."

On January 23, 1899, the Philippine Republic was inaugurated at Malolos in colorful ceremonies. Aguinaldo took his oath of office after having been informed that he has been proclaimed President of the Republic. The Malolos Constitution was read article by article, and the army took its oath of loyalty before the President. A review of troops and procession followed.

To make the event more memorable, Aguinaldo issued a decree granting pardon to all Spanish prisoners of war who were not members of the Spanish regular army and at the same time, granting to Spaniards and other aliens the right to engage in business within the limits of the Republic.

History of the Filipino People. Teodoro A. Agoncillo
Birth of the
Philippine Republic

On the sunny morning of January 23, 1899, the First Philippine Republic, popularly known as the Malolos Republic, was inaugurated amidst colorful ceremonies at the Barasoain Church. This was also the first republic in Asia.

In this inaugural address, President Aguinaldo expressed his congratulations to the members of the Malolos Congress for drafting the Malolos Constitution, to the armed forces for winning the country's freedom by force of arms, and to the Filipino people for their cooperation and sacrifices in the struggle for independence. He stated the aspiration of the nation "to live under the democratic regime of the Philippine Republic, free from the yoke of any foreign domination." In conclusion, he declared:
"Great is this day, glorious this date, and forever memorable this moment in which our beloved people are raised to the apotheosis of Independence."

The Philippines: A Unique Nation. Dr. Sonia M. Zaide

Pomp and Ceremony

On January 23, 1899, the First Philippine Republic was inaugurated. The people rejoiced; appropriate festivities marked the day throughout the land.

In Malolos, the inauguration ceremonies were typical of the elite. Aguinaldo took his oath of office as President of the Philippine Republic wearing formal attire "with top hat, white gloves, and bow tie" and carrying a "tasseled gold-knobbed cane." The food at the inaugural banquet was European and the menu written in French.

The Philippines: A Past Revisited. Renato Constantino

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