MANILA, Philippines – Senator Francis Pangilinan urged Filipinos to resist historical revisionism on the 10th death anniversary of former president Corazon Aquino.
In a statement on Thursday, August 1, Pangilinan said Aquino served as an inspiration not only to Filipinos, but to the rest of the world, as an icon of democracy during the People Power Revolution in 1986.
“Simbolo siya ng tagumpay ng bayan sa pakikibaka laban sa diktadurya. Ito’y isang aral na hindi dapat kalimutan, lalo na ngayon,” he said.
(She symbolizes the people’s triumph in the hard-fought struggle against the dictatorship. It’s a lesson that should never be forgotten, especially now.)
Pangilinan also said that the death of Aquino’s husband, former senator Benigno Aquino Jr, was a “turning point” for him to see the evils of Martial Law. (READ: FALSE: ‘No massacres’ during Martial Law)
In the age of social media today, Pangilinan noted that online platforms may be used to “erase” the victory of People Power.
“Ginagamit na sandata ng mga kaaway ng kalayaan ang digital media para ikalat ang propagandang binubura itong tagumpay ng demokrasya. Ipinanalo natin ang ating kalayaan sa EDSA. Dapat nating protektahan ang ating kalayaan at ang ating kasaysayan laban sa rebisyunismo,” Pangilinan said.
(The enemies of freedom have weaponized digital media to spread the propaganda erasing this triumph of democracy. We won our freedom in EDSA. We must protect our freedom and our history against revisionism.)
Fight against repression
In a separate statement, detained Senator Leila de Lima said former president Aquino remains to be an inspiration for her.
“Sa kabila ng pananakot at panggigipit ng mapaniil na rehimen, tinanggap niya ang hamon na mamuno para makabangon ang bansa mula sa diktadurya,” De Lima said.
(Despite the threats and the oppression of the tyrannical regime, she accepted the challenge to lead so the country could rise from dictatorship.)
De Lima, who has denounced her detention for drug charges as political persecution, drew parallels between the Duterte administration and the Martial Law period.
“Nakita naman natin noon, at sa mga nangyayari ngayon, na hindi masosolusyunan ng dahas at kamay na bakal ang ating mga problema – sa halip ay kumikitil lamang ng libo-libong buhay at pangarap,” De Lima said.
(We saw from the past, and even with what’s happening today, that we can’t solve our problems with violence and an iron fist – these only kill thousands of lives and dreams.)
Corazon Aquino died at the age of 76 on August 1, 2009, due to colon cancer. Her death sparked calls for her only son, then-senator Benigno Aquino III, to run for president in the 2010 elections. He won and served as president from 2010 to 2016. – Rappler.com