Around 1,000 anti-Marcos rallyists gathered at Plaza Miranda in Quiapo, Manila on Thursday, June 30, to protest against the incoming administration of President-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.
Obet De Castro, campaign director of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan, told Manila Bulletin that they staged the rally to express the wishes and grievances of the different sectors, including teachers and health workers, to the national government.
Some of the issues of the rallyists were the calls for an increase in wages, justice for human rights violation victims, the imprisonment of former First Lady Imelda Marcos, press freedom, to free political prisoners, and to stop the killing of farmers.
“Alam naman natin lahat na ang iniwan ni Duterte [President Rodrigo Duterte] na utang, at ang iniwan niyang ekonomiya ay nagpahirap lalo sa tao. Then, wala kaming naririnig sa gustong mangyari ni Bongbong [Marcos] dito(We all know that Duterte [President Rodrigo Duterte] left behind a debt and that the economy he left behind brought hardship to the people. We have not heard anything on what Bongbong [Marcos] wants to do about it),” he said.
He cited some issues that the country is facing such as the consecutive increases in oil prices as well as the alleged debt former President Ferdinand Marcos Sr. left behind that affected the lives of the people.
“Gusto naming sabihin na hindi namin tinatanggap ang bagong rehimeng ito ng Marcos, sa batayan na malaking pananagutan ng kanilang pamilya sa mamamayang Pilipino (We want to say that we do not accept this new Marcos regime, on the basis that their family has a great accountability to the Filipino people),” De Castro said.
“There is no such thing as unity pag ganito ang sitwasyon ng mamamayan at wala silang ginagawa at walang pag-amin ang pamilyang Marcos sa kanilang mga kasalanan (There is no such thing as unity when the situation of the people is like this and they do nothing, and the Marcos family does not even admit their sins),” he added.
He said the people should not believe what the Marcoses say and to also challenge the new president on what he can do to change the situation of poverty in the country.
De Castro said that there are around 1,500 individuals from different organizations under the BAYAN and Makabayan blocks who joined the protest.
Joey, 60, a health worker, said he joined the rally as he is convinced that the results of the recent election were not transparent at all.
Another rallyist, Gary, 61, a member of the Bayan muna group, said he participated to fight oppression, exploitation, and the policies of the government which are against the people.
Maj. Pidencio Saballo Jr. of the Manila Police District, team leader of the 150-man police augmentation force in Plaza Miranda, said that they did not encounter any problem with the rallyists.
“Sa atin hangga’t maaari, iniiwasan talaga natin magkaroon ng gulo. Pero siyempre kapag lumabag na sila, may karapatan naman tayong arestuhin sila kapag lalabag na sila sa batas (As much as possible we really want to avoid chaos. But of course, when they violate the laws, we have the right to arrest them),” Saballo said.