Bring flowers and say they’re for ‘mañanita’ to avoid arrest, Pangilinan tells protesters
MANILA, Philippines — People planning to stage a protest against the lapses of the government should bring flowers and call their gathering a “mañanita,” or a little morning celebration of a birthday, “so that you can’t be arrested sued, or be held responsible,” Sen. Francis Pangilinan said in a tweet in Filipino on Saturday.
Pangilinan was harking back to the May 8 birthday celebration of Major Gen. Debold Sinas, chief of the National Capital Region Police Office, which netizens criticized for ignoring physical distancing under the COVID-19 quarantine rules after they saw photographs of the event posted at the NCRPO Facebook page.
Sa lahat ng nais mag protesta sa mga nagaganap na kapalpakan sa palakad sa Gobyerno, please lang tawaging Mañanita ang pagtitipon at magdala ng mga bulaklak para hindi maaring arestuhin, kasuhan o managot ang lahat ng dumalo!
— Kiko Pangilinan (@kikopangilinan) June 6, 2020
Pangilinan also made the statement following the arrest of members of progressive groups in Cebu after they staged a protest against the Anti-Terrorism Bill.
Six jeepney drivers were also arrested in Caloocan for organizing a rally which called for the return of jeepneys during the eased restrictions of lockdown in Metro Manila.
President Rodrigo Duterte allowed Sinas to stay on as NCRPO chief though complaints were filed against him and other police officers in the NCRPO for violating quarantine protocols.
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