On the 41st year of the declaration of Martial Law in the Philippines, campus journalists and students from different schools joined militant, artist, and church groups in a protest rally in Rizal Park against the culture of corruption and pork barrel system in the current Aquino administration.
“The corruption in the Aquino government sparked yet another outrage from the Filipino people,” said Anna Patricia Santos, Vice President for Luzon of the College Editors Guild of the Philippines. “The youth is now heeding the call of the time to act against corruption and pork barrel.”
“A survey two months ago showing that three out four Filipinos are satisfied with Aquino’s performance was republished to cover up his involvement in the pork barrel scandal,” Santos said. “With the public knowing that he has more than P1.3-trillion Presidential pork barrel fund, it is obvious that his current approval ratings dwindled down.”
Aside from the call to abolish the pork barrel system and re-channel to social services such as education and health, CEGP also reminded the youth of the Martial Law which was a time of corruption, oppression, and grave violations to the rights of the people which are still happening under this so-called “restored democracy” we experience today.
“We should never forget Martial Law and the Marcos dictatorship,” Santos continued. “Martial Law should be a reminder for us that this country was once and continually under terror and corruption and it is the duty of the youth and people to defend and protect our rights and freedoms and struggle for genuine democracy.”
“Corruption and patronage politics still persist in the current system of the government,” Santos said. “The Filipino people should remain vigilant and mindful of the act of the government.”
Youth groups also led simultaneous noise barrages on Friday, September 20, from various points in Metro Manila in preparation for September 21 Luneta rally. After the program in Luneta, militant groups marched to Mendiola to hold another program.###