Senator Nancy Binay has said the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) should first seek congressional approval before it introduces any design changes on coins and bank notes.
Binay made the suggestion in light of the removal of three World War II martyrs in the redesigned P1,000 banknote, saying a congressional concurrence is necessary before any major redesign is made on coins and notes by the central bank.
The senator suggested that designs made in the legal tender are first approved and endorsed by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) and concurred in by Congress before being released for circulation.
“Redesigning our money should have the concurrence of Congress and the NHCP because it has relevance and implications in our history, and there’s a higher purpose to what image or content should be printed on notes and coins,” Binay said in a statement.
“Even naming streets, schools and other things of historical significance pass through Congress, thus, notes and coins should also be accorded the same treatment,” she pointed out.
Binay said she is disappointed over the decision of the BSP to expunge iconic Filipino heroes in its fresh design series in favor of Philippine flora and fauna.
“Aalisin yung mga bayani para sa eagle (We are removing our heroes for the eagle)? Sadly, it is like saying that our martyrs and heroes are no longer worth our money,” she said.
“The BSP did not only erase our heroes in the P1,000 bill, it has also diminished Philippine history by focusing on plants and animals. Our heroes literally lost their roles,” Binay lamented.
“It’s sad that Josefa Llanes-Escoda, Jose Abad Santos, and Gen. Vicente Lim have become the first casualties of retail revisionism and hero delegitimation. For some strange reason, BSP is slowly silencing memories of heroism and acts of patriotism,” the senator noted.
The BSP has announced the issuance of new polymer P1,000 bills as part its direction to shift to a plastic synthetic material instead of cotton and abaca. As a matter of policy, the BSP frequently redesigns and updates coins and banknotes to address counterfeits.
The BSP’s fresh note series is said to be made of polymer material desgined to be more hygienic, sustainable, durable and cost-effective.