The 2010 Oblation Run at University of the Philippines Los Baños
The Oblation Run (sometimes referred to as the Ritual Dance of the Brave) is an annual event held by several Filipino chapters of Alpha Phi Omega (APO) in different universities in the Philippines. The event first organized in 1977 at University of the Philippines Diliman to promote Hubad na Bayani (Tagalog for Naked Hero), a film. It draws its name from the Oblation, a statue of a nude man located in every University of the Philippines (UP) campus, which symbolizes "a selfless offering of one’s self to the country." The event is usually done on December 16, and serves as a protest to contemporary national issues. Additional runs are sometimes held in special events, such as the Centennial Run in 2008 where 100 members ran to celebrate the 100th anniversary of UP.
Participants of the Diliman Oblation Run are male APO members numbering 24 on average. Women participating in the event, however, is not unheard of. Runners usually bear masks to hide their identities, and may wear leaves to cover their genitals. They usually hand roses to a number of female spectators.
The run has been criticized by Aquilino Pimentel, Jr., a Philippine senator, calling it a "blatant display of male genitals" and a "wanton disregard of the rules of decent society," and comparing it with exhibitionist behaviors that are prohibited by the Revised Penal Code of the Philippines. In line with this, he called for an investigation on March 2009 to determine if the event violates that law.
Alpha Phi Omega is a fraternity founded on December 16, 1925 at Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, United States. The first Philippine APO chapter was chartered on March 2, 1950 at the Far Eastern University in Manila. The Eta chapter was established on February 10, 1953 at UP Diliman. UP Diliman is the main campus of the University of the Philippines, a Philippine state university founded on June 1908. It is particularly known for its student activism.
Despite inconsistencies, sources generally agree that the Oblation Run started in 1977. Also known as the Ritual Dance of the Brave, it takes its name from the Oblation, a statue of a nude man unveiled in 1939. Originally completely nude, a fig leaf was added to cover its genitals during UP President Jorge Bocobo's term (1934–1939). It is found in every UP campus, and has since become UP's identifying symbol. The run has since spread to other UP campuses, including Baguio, Los Baños, Manila and Visayas, and non-UP colleges and universities, such as the Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Far Eastern University and Bulacan State University.
According to a 1996 article published by the UP Diliman APO website, the run originated when an unnamed APO member ran naked inside the campus to promote an APO-sponsored play called Hubad na Bayani (Tagalog for Naked Hero). The play is dedicated to Rolly Abad, an APO member who was killed in a brawl a few months earlier. The run was a success so APO decided to stage it every year on the fraternity's anniversary, December 16. This view is supported by a GMA News and Public Affairs report.
An newer account by Oble, a student newspaper of University of the Philippines Baguio, gives a different story. According to a 2011 article of the paper, the first Oblation Run was done by Rolly Abad himself to protest the Ferdinand Marcos's banning of Hubad na Bayani, a play detailing human rights violations during his martial law regime. Rolly Abad would be killed a few months later in a brawl. In his honor, APO decided to stage the run annually and voice contemporary socio-political issues along with it.
Meanwhile, the Philippine Daily Inquirer notes an APO member, Menggie Cobarrubias, saying "We [I and four others] started it as a prank when the Marcos dictatorship did not allow the showing of the play, Hubad na Bayani." The play was a political satire against Marcos.
An Associated Press article likewise details a different version of the story. According to Oliver Teves who wrote the article, the run started as a stunt to promote Hubad na Bayani, a film that depicted oppressed plantation workers. Similar to the account by Oble, the film was banned by Marcos. Similarly, the Internet Movie Database lists Hubad na Bayani as 1977 film directed by Robert Arevalo. It reportedly won the 1978 Gawad Urian Awards for best picture, best production design and best screenplay.
Participation of women
During the December 2005 Oblation Run at UP Diliman, two unidentified naked women, reportedly Koreans, were seen tailing 30 members who were part of the event. This is the first ever instance that women took part in the occasion. The two, wearing masks to hide their identities, held banners promoting equal rights for women. After posing for photographers, they entered a car which then sped off. The act was condemned by APO.
We are condemning their act not on gender issues because they are women, they can do run naked if they want to. But the event [Oblation Run] was supposed to be ours.
To celebrate the University of the Philippines centennial, 100 APO members ran half a mile around the Diliman campus on June 18, 2008. This is the largest Oblation Run in its history in terms of number of participants. The participants started running on 11 AM PST from Vinzons Hall to the Oblation statue in front of Quezon Hall, the UP administration building. Several runners carried placards stating "Serve the People" and raised social issues, including appeals for greater state subsidy of education and ouster of then-President of the Philippines Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. The event was observed by senior APO alumni, including Jejomar Binay who was the mayor of Makati. He is currently the Vice President of the Philippines.
The Oblation Run is usually held on December 16, in honor of the international founding of Alpha Phi Omega on December 16, 1925. The date may be changed if December 16 falls on a weekend. The run may also be held in concurrence with other significant events, such as APO's national anniversary on March, an APO chapter's anniversary, and occasions significant to their home university. Runners usually bear masks to hide their identities, and may wear leaves to cover their genitals. They usually hand roses to a number of female spectators.
All those who run are full pledged [sic] members who have volunteered. There is a misconception that the Oblation Run is something our neophytes have to undergo as part of their initiation. That’s not true. We never allow our applicants to join [the Oblation Run].—Ojie Santillan, APO Auxiliary Chancellor
As a sign of protest, it has called attention to several national issues including appeals for the ouster of former President Joseph Estrada, justice for the victims of the Maguindanao massacre and the 2010 Philippine Bar exam bombing.
Themes at UP Diliman Campus.
- 2013 Better disaster risk reduction and management
- 2012 Free, fair and clean 2013 national elections
- 2011 "A Run for Philippine Rivers"
- 2010 Justice for the victims of the 2010 Philippine Bar exam bombing.
- 2009 Justice for the victims of the Maguindanao massacre
- 2008 Opposing Charter Change particularly to any extension of the term of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
- 2007 Ouster of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and others.
- 2006 Protest against the University of the Philippines tuition increase, Charter change, and the withholding of funds of the Philippine Collegian
- 2005 "Merry Christmas ???", three question marks represent the budget cut for the tuition of the "Scholars of the Nation" ("Iskolar ng Bayan") the backpay and cost of living allowance woes of the University of the Philippines employees; and the implementation of the EVAT
- 2004 "Environment Restoration and Social Justice for Hacienda Luisita Victims"
- 2003 Clean and peaceful elections (and others)
- 2002 "No to Budget Cuts"
- 2001 "Stop Corruption! Transparency in the Government"/"Walang Ku-Corrupt"
- 2000 "Erap Resign"/Ouster of President Joseph Estrada
- 1999 Calling attention to University of the Philippines Budget Cuts
- 1995 Stop Fraternity Violence
On March 2009, the Oblation Run was criticized by Aquilino Pimentel, Jr., a Philippine senator, calling it a "blatant display of male genitals" and a "wanton disregard of the rules of decent society." He noted that the Oblation Run, being a public event, was being viewed by young children and "innocent audiences, young and old," comparing it with exhibitionist behaviors that are prohibited by the Revised Penal Code of the Philippines. He also said that it was discriminatory against women.
Pimentel's position was supported by officials of the Catholic Church. For instance, Tagbilaran Bishop Leonardo Medroso identified it as "malicious" and "morally lacking." Like Pimintel, he cited that "innocent youths" are among the spectators of the run. He said that "it could be done in a more decent way without showing their nude bodies" (trans). Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Oscar V. Cruz supports this view.
In line with this, he called for an investigation on March 2009 to determine if the event violates the said law. He sought "to sanction the parties responsible, including the university authorities, for failure to exercise their bounden duty to see it that the laws and rules of this country prevail." The Oblation Run was defended by Senator Francis Pangilinan, a former UP Student Council president. He argued that the run is not obscene because the runners were merely exercising their freedom of expression.
In 2010, Salvador Curutchet of the Institute of the Incarnate Word banned De La Salle Araneta University students from participating in the run. Two years prior to banning it in 2010, the APO chapter of De La Salle held the Oblation Run after obtaining a permit from the city government of Malabon. This was in celebration of its 50th anniversary since the university recognized the fraternity. In response to the ban, the chapter held a luncheon on its 2010 anniversary instead of a nude run.
Similarly, there used to be an Oblation Run conducted in Taft Avenue, Manila in support of the APO members taking the bar examinations. However, it has been of prohibited since 2008 by the city government of Manila due to complaints from examinees and their guests regarding "the unnecessary noise and obscenity of the said oblation run."
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Oblation Run.|
- Lynda Jumilla (2009-03-04). "Pimentel: Probe blatant display of male genitals in frat run". ABS–CBN News. Retrieved 2011-05-26.
- Marlon Ramos (2008-06-19). "‘Oblation Run’ steals show in UP Centennial activities". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- Katherine Adraneda (2008-06-19). "Oblation Run, protesting students greet UP centennial celebration". Philippine Star. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- "About APO". Alpha Phi Omega. Retrieved 2011-06-18.
- "History of Alpha Phi Omega". Alpha Phi Omega International (Philippines). Retrieved 2011-06-18.
- "About". Retrieved 2011-06-18.
- "Honor and Excellence: UP Diliman through the Years". University of the Philippines Diliman. Retrieved 2011-06-18.
- Philippine Legislature (1908-06-18). "Act No. 1870". Chan Robles Virtual Law Library. Retrieved 2011-06-18.
- Jose Maria Sison (2010-06-26). "The Incubation of Activism in the University of the Philippines". 2010 Yearbook of the University of the Philippines. Quezon City: University of the Philippines.
- Sidney Ventura (1996-01-02). "Buns on the Run". Kampus Magazine (UP Alpha Phi Omega Fraternity and Sorority). Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- Her Lynn Balares; Jian Marienne Co (2011-03-02). "Oblation: The Truth beneath the Leaves". Oble. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- Oliver Teves (2008-06-18). "100 Philippine students run naked at university". Fox News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- Mark Merueñas (2008-06-18). "100 UP fratmen, alumni join Oblation Run for centennial celebration". GMA Network. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- "The Parangal Sentenyal 2008 was held on June 16, 2008 at the UP Theater in Diliman, Quezon City". University of the Philippines Alumni Association. Retrieved 2011-06-18.
- "History of the U.P. Oblation". University of the Philippines Alumni Association of Greater Chicago. Retrieved 2011-06-18.[dead link]
- Her Lynn Balares; Jian Marienne Co (2011-03-02). "Oblation: The Truth beneath the Leaves". Oble. Retrieved 2011-05-20.
- Maricar Cinco (2010-12-16). "UP budget slash marks APO run in Los Baños campus". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved 2011-05-20.
- "UP fratmen stage Oblation Run vs Charter change". GMA News. 2008-12-16. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- Reyan L. Arinto (2010-12-17). "APO fraternity members conduct Oblation Run yesterday afternoon". Leyte Samar Daily Express. Retrieved 2011-05-20.
- Saksi: PUP students stage 'oblation run' at Sta. Mesa campus. GMA News. 2008-09-30. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- Rommel Ramos. "Hubo’t hubad na protesta sa Maguindanao Massacre". Punto Central Luzon (in Tagalog) (San Fernando, Pampanga). Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- "Saksi: Bulacan State U students stage 'Oblation Run'". GMA News. 2008-12-05. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- "Hubad na bayani (1977)". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2011-06-18.
- "Awards for Hubad na bayani (1977)". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2011-06-18.
- Ellalyn B. De Vera (2005-12-06). "Female runners join UP Oblation Run in Diliman". Manila Bulletin (University of the Philippines). Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- "Official website". Office of the Vice President of the Philippines. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- Francis Quina (September 2008). "Model Iskolar ng Bayan Awarded at UP Visayas". In Marby Villaceran. The Oblation (University of the Philippines) 2 (3): 6.
- "UP-Diliman Oblation Run calls for justice to victims of Maguindanao massacre". Balita. Philippine News Agency. 2009-12-15. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- "APO seeks justice for itself, exam blast victims in UP oblation run". Manila Bulletin. Philippine News Agency. 2010-12-16. Retrieved 2011-05-30.
- #OblationRun2013 | Students, visitors go bird-watching in UP Diliman, Los Banos, Manila, Clark
- UP Oblation Run 2012: APO members run naked for fair elections
- 2011 Oblation Run at University of the Philippines, Diliman
- "Naked UP students run vs Charter change - INQUIRER.net, Philippine News for Filipinos". Newsinfo.inquirer.net. 2008-12-16. Retrieved 2011-12-29.
- "Nude runners on UP campus call for Arroyo ouster - INQUIRER.net, Philippine News for Filipinos". Newsinfo.inquirer.net. 2007-12-15. Retrieved 2011-12-29.
- "UP regents vote 7-0 for tuition hike - INQUIRER.net, Philippine News for Filipinos". Newsinfo.inquirer.net. 2006-12-16. Retrieved 2011-12-29.
- http://www.mb.com.ph/node/190653 Manila Bulletin December 20,2004 Oblation Run: APO’s bold, daring tradition]
- Naked Run for Clean Peaceful Polls. Philippine Daily Inquirer. 2003-12-17. Retrieved 2011-12-29.
- UP Oblation Run. Philippine Daily Inquirer. 2011-12-15. Retrieved 2011-12-29.
- "Fraternity Protest". The Victoria Advocate. 2000-12-15. Retrieved 2011-12-29.
- "Anti-Estrada protesters strip naked in UP run - The Philippine Star » News » Metro". Philstar.com. 2000-12-16. Retrieved 2011-12-29.
- Rudy Andal (2005-12-18). "‘Oblation Run’ nagtuturo ng kabastusan — Sen. Nene". Pilipino Star Ngayon (in Tagalog). Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- Maila Ager (2009-03-06). "Pimentel wants probe of ‘oblation run’". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved 2011-05-26.
- Aie Balagtas (2009-03-05). "Nene wants probe into naked protest in U-Belt". GMA News. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- "Nene: APO naked protest discriminated women". GMA News. 2009-03-05. Retrieved 2011-05-30.
- Doris Franche (2009-03-07). "Oblation run ng APO malisyoso - Obispo". Pilipino Star Ngayon (in Tagalog). Retrieved 2011-05-31.
- Rudy Andal (2005-12-19). "‘Oblation Run’ di bastos – Sen. Kiko". Pilipino Star Ngayon (in Tagalog). Retrieved 2011-05-26.
- TJD (2010-03-06). "Priest bans nude frat 'Oblation Run'". GMA News. Retrieved 2011-05-31.
- Ruben D. Manahan 4th (2008-08-21). "Manila prepares for bar exams; seeks ban of naked runners". The Manila Times. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
- Oblation Run
- Alpha Phi Omega Fraternity and Sorority Philippines
- UP Alpha Phi Omega Fraternity and Sorority