July 17, 2012 - Manila, Philippines - Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird takes time between bilateral meetings in Manila today to lay a wreath in honour of José Rizal, the Filipino patriot and national hero who fought for reform in the Philippines during the Spanish colonial era.
“I am honoured to have the opportunity to pay my respects to the memory of this great man,” said Baird. “The world can learn from his example of dedication to his country and fellow citizens.”
José Rizal was a champion of peaceful reform through institutional channels and was a key player in bringing self-government to the Philippines.
During his visit to the Rizal monument and mausoleum, the Minister was offered a key to the city of Manila by Mayor Alfredo Lim.
Baird is in the Philippines as part of his Southeast Asia tour, which aims to enhance bilateral relations and advance Canada’s prosperity agenda.