Protesters gather in Mendiola to commemorate Martial lawBy Jamie Marie Elona
MANILA, Philippines—Mendiola was closed to traffic Friday as militant groups arrived to stage protest actions to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Martial Law declaration.
The District Tactical Operations Center of Manila Police District’s said around 700 protesters who began their protest march from the University of Santo Tomas in España arrived in Mendiola, also known as Don Chino Roces Bridge, around 11:30 a.m.
“Today we say, ‘Never again’! But in the same breath, we demand justice for all rights victims then and now,” Bagong Alyansang Makabayan chairman Carol Araullo said.
“Martial Law should never be forgotten. Its bitter lessons and the heroic struggle of the people to overthrow the US-Marcos dictatorship should be told to future generations,” Araullo said.
The group said the country’s leaders after President Ferdinand Marcos was deposed in 1986 failed to “render justice for the victims of Martial Law,” she said, adding that justice was never achieved even after 40 years.
“Even the indemnification bill is still pending in Congress. Noynoy Aquino has not shown any keen interest in achieving justice for the thousands of victims of the dictatorship,” Araullo added.
Protest rallies were expected to last until evening on Friday, radio reports said.