PHILIPPINE POSTAGE STAMPS bearing the image of democracy icon and former President Corazon C. Aquino was launched September 8, at the historic EDSA Shrine after the 12 noon mass coinciding with the birthday of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
President Cory was a known devotee of Mother Mary. The EDSA Shrine was formally known as the Shrine of Mary, Queen of Peace, which is dedicated to Our Lady whom many believe miraculously interceded to oust the dictatorship in a peaceful uprising in 1986.
PhilPost issued a limited number of the stamps of not more than 70,000 pieces or 35,000 se-tenant pairs alike.
Postmaster General Hector R.R. Villanueva said that “the Cory Aquino stamps will serve as a fitting tribute to her achievements before her incumbency when she led the 1986 People Power Revolution. As well as the freedom and democracy that we regained during her tenure, including fighting off several coup attempts to unseat her, must never be forgotten by all Filipinos,” he said.
Villanueva is also hoping that the stamps would serve as a permanent reminder to all Filipinos, those present and future generations, of her valuable contribution to the country.
The President Cory Aquino memorial stamps can be considered the most celebrated issue ever of the Philippines. Released on September 8, 2009 with a limited edition of 70,000 pieces or 35,000 sets since the stamps were issued in se-tenant pairs, the entire issue sold out overnight. This has never happened before with any Philippine issue.
Demands for the stamps were not only from local stamp collectors but from the general public as well. Orders were pouring in from all postal regions so much so that the Philippine Postal Corporation (Philpost) was prompted to print a second edition to satisfy the overwhelming clamor for the Cory stamps.
In order to stay true to earlier announcements made by Philpost of only 35,000 sets will be issued, the stamp design inscriptions of "P7" and "PILIPINAS" were re-positioned making the second printing completely different. Only 300,000 pieces or 150,000 se-tenant pairs were issued on September 18. Reports coming from Manila are that the second edition is proving to be as popular as the first one. A long line of customers were at the Stamps and Philatelic Section of the Main Post Office in Manila on the first day of issue. This prompted for the issuance of assigned numbers to each customer in order to avoid pandemonium and to be able to serve customers on a first-come-first-served basis. A first in Philippine philately, maybe even in the world of philately.
It will not be a surprise if the second edition also sells out just like the first edition.