US-based Filipinos reject Marcos-Duterte in independence day mob

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Filipino protesters demonstrate against the incoming administration of Ferdinand
Filipino protesters demonstrate against the incoming administration of Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr. in NYC PIDC 2022. (Source: Astrid Dong @neverforgetpidc/Instagram)

About 500 individuals took the streets of New York on Sunday (June 5) during the Philippine Independence Day Celebration (PIDC) in Madison Ave., New York City to reject the tandem of dictator’s son Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Davao City mayor Sara Duterte who both bagged the top two executive posts in the country.

“The contingent rejects the system of patronage and oligarchy plaguing Philippine politics, currently embodied in the nefarious Marcos-Duterte tandem,” the Never Forget Contingent said in a release.

Never Forget Contingent describes itself as “a broad unity of Filipinos across the Northeast that aspire for a truly democratic Philippines.”

According to them, PIDC marshals tried to stop the crowd from participating in the event and even “grabbed one marcher while en route.”

Filipino protesters demonstrate against the incoming administration of Ferdinand
Filipino protesters demonstrate against the incoming administration of Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr. in NYC PIDC 2022. (Source: Astrid Dong @neverforgetpidc/Instagram)

The marshals were met with resistance by protesters as the call to “Let us march!” of Martial Law survivors and elders was echoed by the crowd. Onlookers of the protest also unified with the chants saying “Never again to Martial Law!” and “Marcos, Duterte, Walang Pinag-iba! Parehong Tuta, Diktador, Pasista! (There is no difference between Marcos and Duterte! Both are lap dogs, dictators, and fascists!)”

“The effort to stop us from expressing the sentiments of millions of Filipinos during a celebration of Philippine independence is an omen of what lies ahead with the Marcos-Duterte administration,” said Julie Jamora of Never Forget! Coalition Steering Committee.

The contingent consisted of 30 organizations with individual members who are martial law survivors, youth from college and university student groups, and supporters of Leni Robredo. They carried banners that read “Reject Marcos-Duterte! Continue the fight for genuine democracy!” and “Turn grief into courage, tuloy ang laban!!!”

Broadway and performing artists were also present in the contingent, singing “Di nyo ba naririnig?”, a progressive Filipino adaptation of Les Misérables’ “Do you hear the people sing?” which was first performed in 2017 during a Martial Law commemoration protest in Luneta. A cultural program was also held at Madison Square Park.

Mark Ernest Famatigan is a news writer who focuses on Philippine politics. He is an advocate for press freedom and regularly follows developments in the Philippine economy. The views expressed are his own.

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