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National

TODAY IN HISTORY: Father Gomez of Gomburza was born in Manila

InterAksyon.com
The online news portal of TV5

MANILA, Philippines - On August 2, 1799, Father Mariano Gomez, one of the triumvirate priests known in Philippine history books as GOMBURZA, was born in Sta. Cruz, Manila.

GOMBURZA is an acronym of the surnames of priests Mariano Gómez, José Apolonio Burgos, and Jacinto Zamora, who were executed on February 17, 1872 at Bagumbayan (Luneta) by Spanish colonial authorities on charges of subversion arising from the 1872 Cavite mutiny.

Gomez, then aged 25, and designated head priest of Bacoor, Cavite, fought for the Filipino priests' rights against abuses, getting the ire of Spanish friars who eventually ordered his arrest and incarceration.

He was thrown in jail along with Fr. Burgos, Fr. Zamora, Joaquin Pardo de Tavera and Maximo Paterno. The priests' subsequent deaths sparked the Philippine revolution.

Before he was executed, Fr. Gomez published the newspaper La Verdad, or the Truth. The paper served as the voice of the Filipino propagandists against the Spanish colonizers.

Ruby Tower disaster

Also on this same date in 1968, an intensity 7 earthquake rocked Manila causing the collapse of Ruby Tower in Binondo, killing hundreds of people.

The Ruby Tower collapse served as an eye opener in disaster management. Later that year, the Marcos administration established the National Committee on Disaster Operation which eventually evolved as the Camp Aguinaldo-based Office of Civil Defense.

Next came the National Disaster Control Center, the forerunner of the National Disaster Coordinating Council, the highest policy making body on disasters in the country. The earthquake's epicenter was located in Casiguran,Quezon (now part of Aurora province).

The earthquake of 1969 is deemed as the most destructive quake in the Philippines prior to July 1990 Luzon killer earthquake that spawned a tsunami that reached as far as Japan.

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