26 March 2013
THE HONORABLE SENATE PRESIDENT
and Members of the Senate
Senate of the Philippines
Ladies and Gentlemen:
Pursuant to Sec. 27(1), Article VI of the Constitution, I am returning herewith the enrolled House Bill No. 5655, entitled:
“AN ACT DECLARING THE WALING WALING ORCHID AS NATIONAL FLOWER OF THE PHILIPPINES IN ADDITION TO SAMPAGUITA AS DECLARED IN PROCLAMATION NO. 652 DATED 01 FEBRUARY 1934 BY GOVERNOR-GENERAL FRANK MURPHY.”
without my signature.
While the objectives of the bill relating to the preservation and protection of the Waling Waling Orchid by increasing public awareness of its endangered status are laudable, its declaration as a second national flower has the pernicious effect of creating confusion in the minds of the public and the academe. Moreover, declaring the Waling Waling Orchid as the second national flower would have the effect of displacing the hallowed status of the Sampaguita, a cherished national icon, as the primary symbol of Philippine culture and artistry. Furthermore, there are other means to promote the protection and preservation of the Waling Waling Orchid without declaring it a second national flower.
In view of these considerations, I am constrained to veto the abovementioned enrolled bill.
Very truly yours,
(Sgd.) BENIGNO S. AQUINO III
Hon. Feliciano R. Belmonte, Jr.
House of Representatives