DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 21 Sept)—Progressive groups urged the Filipino youth to not forget the history of the Philippines under martial law and remember the human rights violations committed during the administration of the late President Ferdinand Marcos Sr. as the country commemorates the 51st anniversary of its declaration on Thursday.
In an interview, Paul John Dizon, Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) Southern Mindanao Region secretary general, said that martial law was the “darkest period in the country’s modern history” where corruption and state-sanctioned “killings, forced disappearances, and tortures” became rampant.
He said around 70 protesters staged a rally at the Freedom Park along Roxas Avenue to reiterate their call for justice for the victims of martial law.
Dizon said survivors of martial law barely attained justice 37 years after Marcos Sr. was booted out from the presidency through a non-violent people power revolution.
He said the Marcos family showed no remorse for the massive human rights violations committed in the past, and lamented the spread of disinformation and fake news after President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. won the 2022 elections.
Dizon called on the Filipino people to fight the “historical revisionism” that seeks to twist history, particularly the directive of the Department of Education (DepED) to change “Diktadurang Marcos” to “Diktadura” in the new curriculum.
He stressed that the country was placed under military rule so that Marcos Sr. could stay in power and not as a measure to address the insurgency and communist rebellion in the country.
He said Filipinos were forced to rebel due to the worsening economic condition and protest against the rampant corruption in government.
Dizon added that the crisis worsened under the administration of Marcos Jr. as a result of his failure to provide a strong economic agenda, particularly the move to import more basic commodities instead of supporting the local farmers.
“For as long as there is no justice for those who were killed and victims of torture, forced disappearances, and those who are hungry, the peace will never be attained at present. The poverty and hardship worsened under the regime of Marcos Jr.-Duterte will force the people to stand and protect their rights,” he said.
Beverly Gofredo, spokesperson for Anakbayan Southern Mindanao region, called on the Filipinos to remember those killed during the martial law.
She said the “youth’s fervency and militance” helped oust Marcos Sr.
She encouraged the Filipino people to assert their rights and fight for the “truth, justice and democracy.” (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)