MANILA, Philippines – The signing of a law recognizing victims of human rights violations during the Marcos administration will be one of the highlights of the 27th anniversary celebration of the EDSA People Power revolution on Monday, February 25.
President Benigno Aquino III will sign into law the Human Rights Victims Reparation and Recognition Act of 2013, which will officially recognize “the atrocities committed by the Marcos administration against their own people,” Malacañang said Saturday, February 23.
Some P10 billion funds recovered from Marcos’ Swiss bank accounts will be appropriated for victims’ reparation. Eighty percent of the amount will be spent for existing claims and 20% for future.
“The commission is mandated to work with the Department of Education and the Commission on Higher Education to educate young people about the abuses committed by the Marcos regime and the heroism by those who opposed it,” the Palace said in a statement.
Another highlight will be the re-enactment of the “Salubungan,” a turning point in the bloodless revolt. It happened when anti-Marcos protesters stopped military tanks and convinced soldiers to join their ranks.
The re-enactment will be held simultaneously in Virac, Dumaguete and Zamboanga by participants from both the public and private sectors.
Aquino will lead the celebration at the People Power Monument in EDSA, and the Palace is inviting Filipinos to join the festivities.
“Nananawagan tayo at iniimbitahan natin ang ating mga mamamayan na dumalo, lumahok at makiisa sa pagdiriwang natin ng ika-dalawampu’t-pitong anibersaryo ng EDSA People Power Revolution,” Sec. Sonny Coloma said in an interview on dzRH.
(We call on citizens to join the celebration of the 27th anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution.)
Parts of EDSA and roads in Ortigas and White Plains will be closed to traffic for the anniversary activities. Classes in all levels will be suspended nationwide.
Palace open to public
The Palace itself will be opened to the public in the afternoon. It will hold sports events and story-telling activities for children.
“Bubuksan ang pintuan ng Malacanang Palace doon sa area ng Kalayaan Hall, para maranasan naman ng ating mga mamamayan, lalung-lalo na ng mga kabataan kung paano ‘yong nasa loob mismo ng Malacanang Palace,” Coloma said.
(We will open Malacañang Palace, the area around Kalayaan Hall, so that citizens, especially the youth, can experience what it’s like to be inside the Palace.)
Youth and student leaders will be attending the activities there, along with children from various orphanages.
The EDSA People Power Commission is the main office in charge of the activities.
“Approaching the midpoint of the Aquino administration, EDSA 27 will be an opportune time for all Filipinos to gather together as an expression of unity and support behind the unprecedented political, legislative and economic gains of President Benigno Aquino III,” the commission said in a statement. – With a repoort from KD Suarez/Rappler.com