Palace providing ‘healthy response’ to issues raised in rallies
Malacañang on Friday said the government has a “healthy response” to the issues raised by the protesters during the National Day of Protest held on Thursday.
Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said the mass actions “elevated public discourse” because it was “basically issue-oriented.”
“The focus of yesterday’s rallies (was) a significant development, which sort of elevated the quality of public discourse in the country. Aside from a small group that burned effigies, it was basically issue-oriented,” Abella said in a Palace briefing.
He said the protest actions were “generally peaceful and orderly.”
“Most of the discourse was regarding people’s issues, and most of it was not regarding personalities,” he said.
Thousands of protesters trooped to Mendiola and Rizal Park in Manila on Thursday to express their discontent over the administration’s brutal war on drugs, anti-crime efforts and alleged human-rights abuses.
The mass actions also coincided with the 45th anniversary of the declaration of martial law by former President Ferdinand Marcos.
Aside from anti-administration rallies, supporters of President Rodrigo Duterte also staged rallies at Mendiola and at the Plaza Miranda in Quiapo.
“It was called a National Day of Protest. In other words, the Palace recognizes that there are varying, there are different voices, and thus… and it is quite open,” Abella said.
He assured the public that the government has a “healthy response” into the concerns and issues raised by the protesters like the alleged victims of extrajudicial killings under the President’s war on drugs.
“There (are) investigations going on, these matters are being looked into,” Abella said.
“The President, the administration is not just waiting, is not just in a reactive mode. It’s actually in quite a proactive mode,” he added.
He admitted that attaining justice for the victims of alleged extrajudicial killings was taking time.
“It’s a little bit slow, of course, considering they are dealing with the bureaucracies, but there is a healthy response to these matters,” he said. /jpv