MANILA, Philippines – Militants gathered along Espana Tuesday have started to march en route to Mendiola in Manila Labor Day.
Police estimated the crowd at 1,500.
In a program at the Plaza Miranda, labor group Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU), along with other groups, will unveil a symbolic mural depicting the collective strength of masses as the “real political power.”
The KMU said that the 15-feet tall mural would serve as a backdrop to the International Workers’ Day 2012 protest attended by thousands of its members.
The acrylic on cloth mural by veteran painter and printmaker Orlando Castillo, “features marginalized social sector in large images to show that the real political power comes from the collective strength and action of workers and the people.”
Apart from the mural, also to be unveiled is the 10-foot effigy of President Benigno Aquino III.
The group earlier said that Aquino’s effigy, which resembles a “pitbull”, will be burned later at the Mendiola Bridge where all the protesters are expected to converge.
Created by the Ugat Lahi Artist Collective, KMU said the effigy symbolized Aquino’s “relentless subservience to the dictates of the United States.”
KMU accused the Aquino government for being US’ most trusted ally from the Asia-Pasific region.
Meanwhile, umbrella group Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) likewise hit on the Aquino government for apparently being an “anti-worker and anti-people”.
Bayan secretary general Renato Reyes Jr. said they found the P8 daily wage hike proposed by the Employers Confederation of the Philippines as “unacceptable and most insulting” to workers.
“The P8 wage hike is not even enough to pay for the minimum jeepney fare of P8.50, or for an extra rice in a carienderia,” he said.