Netizens Pour Mix Reactions on Duterte's Quip on changing PH to 'Maharlika' - BALITANG PINOY

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Friday, February 15, 2019

Netizens Pour Mix Reactions on Duterte's Quip on changing PH to 'Maharlika'

MANILA--'Maharlika', this term was on the top trend in the social media where many Filipino netizens pour mix reactions after President Rodrigo Duterte quipped in a speech to change the name of the Philippines into Maharlika.

"The country is named the Philippines because it was discovered by Ferdinand Magellan using the money of King Philip of Spain. So when that nutjob arrived, he called the country 'the Philippines.' But that's ok. One day, let's change it," he said.

"During the time of Marcos, he was really right. He wanted to change the name to 'Maharlika,' 'The Republic of Maharlika.'" Duterte added.

The historic remark was told during the talks about peace in Mindanao and the handling of certificates for land ownership beneficiaries of the government's agrarian reform program in Maguindanao.

Right after the intriguing speech, bombastic reactions of netizens pile-up the social media.

In a tweet by a girl netizen, she was skeptical if changing the name of Philippines will be the solution to boost the populace and the society itself.

Here's a sneak peak of her tweet:
"Will changing our country's name from the Philippines to Maharlika address any of the following: Create jobs?Jail plunderers? Eradicate bureaucracy? Boost economy? Lessen crimes? Improve business opportunities? Or we will just celebrate a purported locally derived name?", she tweeted.

On the other side, a facebook user who gained the most likes also got the favour of most netizens.

He said, "Philippines was named after King Philip II of Spain & if we keep on calling it "Philippines," parang ok, we're still honoring this King & Spain as a whole. Changing the country's name to "Maharlika" is kinda impressive, as it honors our ancestors, rather than the colonizers."

Other netizens, gave their opinions by rooting to the historical background of the country.
In a youtube user comment, the man explained the meaning behind the controversial topic.

"Ang Maharlica ay nasa Vocabulario de la lengua tagala nina Juande Noceda at Pedro de Sancular noon pang 1574. Ang kahulugan nito ay 'el esclavo que se trata como libre. Sa tagalog ay "Alipin na itinuturing na malaya..." He said.

With all those connotations from netizens, a historian named Professor Xiao Chua made clear the controversy behind the historic 'Maharlika'.

In an interview with GMA news, Chua said that the word maharlika does not mean noble or nobleman.

"While there was the classes of datu and of uripon or alipin, there was the class in the middle of the system that was called maharlika, or timawa in the Visayan language. Middle class. Malaya," Chua said.

Despite that, while President Duterte may think it's a good idea to change the country's name in spite of people's reactions. Palace clarified that renaming Philippines to 'Maharlika' still needs congressional action.

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