Filipino citizens who don’t sing their national anthem enthusiastically enough could face penalties.
Under a new proposed bill, approved by the House of Representatives on Monday, singing to the national anthem will be “mandatory and must be done with fervour.”
If the bill is passed by the senate eventually, those failing to sing with gusto could face a hefty fine of up to 100,000 pesos, or $1,978.
All citizens also have to stand at attention during the song facing the Philippine flag if it is displayed, or if not, the band conductor, according to news outlet the Inquirer.
Those who cannot sing the anthem due to their religious beliefs are exempt, but must “nonetheless, show full respect…by standing at attention.”
In the Philippines, the national anthem, called the Lupang Hinirang, is played during many occasions, including before the screening of a film in the cinema, and during the signing on and off of a television broadcast.
Moviegoers for example, are expected to stand when the national anthem is being played.
“The national anthem embodies and expresses the aspirations, dreams, ideals, longings, commitment and determination, nationalism and patriotism, sentiment and spirit of the people,” Maximo Rodriguez Jr, a principal author of the bill had said earlier.
But it’s not the only country that has strict rules when it comes to the national anthem.
India’s supreme court last year ordered cinemas across the country to play the national anthem, adding that moviegoers had to “stand up in respect” while it was played.