The rector of the Catholic University of Santo Tomas in Manila stressed the importance of remembering during the anniversary of the Battle of Manila on February 3.
“Remembering is part of healing,” said Father Richard Ang, O.P., university president, in a report posted on the school’s official publication, Varsitarian.
“We can only make sense of the past by our ability to retell the story and acknowledging the pain and sufferings inflicted,” he said during a ceremony commemorating the 77th anniversary of the Battle of Manila and the liberation of the Santo Tomas Internment Camp.
The event was attended by officials of the city government, the National Historical Commission of the Philippines, and the embassies of the US, UK, Japan, Australia, and Canada.
Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso hailed the heroism of Manuel Colayco, a UST faculty member who was killed at the gate of UST as he guided the American forces sent to liberate the campus from Japanese control.
“Colayco was a picture of fearlessness, as he risked his life being the commanding officer of the Allied Intelligence Bureau – Manila Unit,” said the mayor.
The university served as an internment camp for about 3,700 foreigners, mostly Americans and British, who were trapped in Manila at the outbreak of the Pacific war, according to the Varsitarian.