MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – While thousands gathered at the Luneta to protest the Marcos burial at the Heroes’ Cemetery, smaller rallies were staged in different cities across the country on Friday, November 25. (READ: Students at anti-Marcos rally: We’re part of the fight)
Protestors chanted “Marcos diktador, hindi bayani” (Marcos is a dictator, not a hero) and “hukayin” (dig him up) as they asked drivers to honk their horns in cities and towns.
The nationwide protest actions were initiated by the Campaign Against the Return of the Marcoses in Malacañang (Carmma), an umbrella group of Martial Law victims that campaigned against the vice presidential bid of the late dictator’s son, Ferdinand Marcos Jr, in 2016.
Here are some of the photos and online posts of rallies held outside Metro Manila:
‘No to historical revisionism’
Despite the heavy downpour due to Tropical Storm Marce, Ilonggo activists marched along General Luna street in Iloilo City chanting, “Tuloy pa rin ang laban (The fight is not yet over),” and encouraging drivers to honk their horns for justice.
Meanwhile, protesters in Negros Occidental remembered the atrocities during martial law, foremost of which was the Escalante Massacre of 1985.
In Cebu City, rain also did not dampen the protest along Colon Street on Friday morning. Protesters in black shirts held placards that read “Ayaw usba ang kasaysayan” (No to historical revisionism).
Based on estimates of Amnesty International (AI), during the Martial Law period, 70,000 people were imprisoned, 34,000 were tortured, and 3,240 were killed. The AI mission, which visited the Philippines from November to December 1975, found that 71 of the 107 prisoners interviewed alleged that they had been tortured.
The Marcoses had been accused of amassing ill-gotten wealth with various estimates putting the total loot at between $5 billion to $10 billion. (READ: Recovering Marcos’ ill-gotten wealth: After 30 years, what? and What Bongbong Marcos knew of Swiss deposits)
Protesters at the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) in Laguna stressed that there could be no forgiveness without justice.
“Paano tayo makapagpapatawad nang ‘di man lang kinikilala ng mga Marcoses ang kanilang kasalanan sa sambayanan?” asked lawyer Filemon Nolasco, the first UPLB University Student Council chairperson.
(How can we forgive the Marcoses if they don’t recognize their sins against the people to begin with?)
About 500 other UPLB students and teachers trooped to Manila to join the “grand Black Friday rally.”
Duterte should unite with the people
In Davao City, hometown of President Rodrigo Duterte, protesters converged at the Freedom Park to reject their former mayor’s alliance with the Marcoses.
“President Rodrigo Duterte should unite with the people and not with the Marcoses,” a speaker at the protest action said in Bisaya, echoing the resounding call in Luneta. (READ: Luneta protesters to Duterte: End alliance with Marcos family)
Protests in Marcos strongholds
Students from University of the Philippines Visayas-Tacloban City and representatives of different sectors marched from UP to the downtown area Friday afternoon.
Protesters in Ilocos Sur also held a protest in the Welcome Arch of Vigan City, in front of the statue of Filipino politician, writer, and labor activist Isabelo delos Reyes.
“Kathang-isip ang ‘Solid North‘ na ipinagmamalaki ng mga Marcos at loyalista nito. Hindi lahat ng Ilokano, magogoyo ng mga magnanakaw at mamamatay-taong mga Marcos,”
(The ‘Solid North” which the Marcoses and their loyalists brag about is a myth. Not all Ilocanos will be deceived by the Marcoses who are accused of plunder and murder.)
In Cagayan, about a hundred protesters converged at Rizal Park in Tuguegarao and marched to the central business district of the city, shouting, “Haan a bannuar ni Marcos!” (Marcos is no hero!)
In Baguio City, protesters marched along Session Road late Friday afternoon. They vowed to sustain protest actions until Marcos’ remains are returned to Ilocos Norte, where the dictator’s remains had been kept in a family mausoleum for nearly 3 decades until Duterte allowed the burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani.
According to BAYAN secretary general Renato Reyes Jr, protest actions were also held in Isabela, General Santos City, Cagayan de Oro, and Palawan. Some Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) also staged protests in solidarity with the national protest action.
MARCOS IS NOT A HERO! https://t.co/3FPaXQQPiD— Xavier University (@XavierAteneo) November 26, 2016
Outside of the Philippines, OFW groups staged protests in the UK, Italy and the Netherlands.
Another rally is set for November 30, 2016.
For highlights of the November 25 rallies across the country, go to Rappler’s live blog. – With a report from Voltaire Tupaz/Rappler.com